TRENTON – Senator Nicholas J. Sacco welcomed final Senate approval for his measure to discourage the theft of E-ZPass responders by making that theft a crime of the fourth degree.
“Unfortunately, E-ZPass responders are easily removed from vehicles and have proven a popular target for thieves,” said Senator Sacco, D-Bergen and Hudson and Chair of the Senate Transportation Committee. “This bill seeks to discourage individuals from targetting these devices and the drivers who use them.”
The bill, S-1835, would amend current law to add theft of a vehicle identification system transponder to the list of what constitutes a crime of the fourth degree that is punishable by a term of imprisonment of up to 18 months, a fine of up to $10,000, or both. The bill also states that if a customer reports in a timely manner the loss or theft of a transponder to the operator of the E-ZPass system, the customer would not be liable for unauthorized charges of $50 or more incurred prior to the reporting of the loss or theft, or unauthorized charges incurred after the reporting of the loss or theft and would not be charged any fees for the stolen transponder or its replacement.
“Drivers who use the E-ZPass system need to know that there are certain protections, both criminal and civil, against the theft of their E-ZPass responders. E-ZPass is a great system that helps reduce congestion and save drivers time during their commute to work. Today we are giving them a safeguard against outrageous fees in case a criminal uses their responder for their own purposes,” said Senator Sacco.
The bill passed the Senate by a vote of 40-0. It now goes to the Assembly for their consideration.