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BUCKHEAD | Peach Pass fine notices arrive months after violation | News

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BUCKHEAD | Peach Pass fine notices arrive months after violation

ATLANTA -- For drivers using the Peach Pass and cruising through the Georgia 400 Toll Plaza, getting a violation could come as a big surprise months later.

That's what happened to Amy Bretherton. She replaced her Wildlife tag with a regular license plate at the end of August, but did not report it to the State Road and Tollway Authority.  Every time she passed through the Cruise Lane, she was hit with a $25 fine.

The trouble is, SRTA never told her.

She got her first violation on September 15.  Then September rolled by, October rolled by, and November rolled by. On December 17 SRTA finally sent her written notices. So far, she owes $255.

"They said they were changing over systems and they were not sending out notification letters for two months and I was still responsible for all the violations that I didn't know I had," Bretherton said.

"If they just would have sent me a letter I would have called immediately and said 'oh my goodness. I got a new license plate and I didn't think to tell you. It's my fault and let me pay the fine,'" said Bretherton.

SRTA admits it is now cross checking all electronic violations manually. They say it may "result in a time lapse between the violation and receipt of the violation notice."

But more than two months?

Atlanta attorney Tom Salata says that's a denial of due process.

"There is no reason that she had to wait 2 months to be advised as to what she was charged with. Her recourse is to file a request for a hearing by the Office of State Administrative Hearings, Salata said.

With the spotlight on this one, Bretherton says she may appeal, while SRTA says it is reducing each of the Bretherton fines from $25 to $5.


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