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Contractor behind Florida's four-week Sunpass problem has checkered past

The vendor in charge of the project has a history of hiccups with large-scale toll efforts.
Credit: 10News
SunPass lanes on a Florida tollway.

TAMPA, Fla. - There is still no answer from the state regarding when its massive SunPass toll backlog will start processing. And the Department of Transportation isn't providing many details about what exactly caused a "six-day" maintenance project to stretch into its fourth week.

However, the vendor in charge of the project has a history of hiccups with large-scale toll efforts. The vendor is Conduent, which spun-off from Xerox in 2017.

According to The Journal News, part of the USA Today Network, four states have toll amnesty programs in place because of electronic toll issues: Texas, California, Maryland and New York.

Conduent/Xerox are also on the hook for $2 billion in Medicaid billing problems following a decision by the Texas Supreme Court last week.

RELATED: Under pressure, SunPass waives all late fees related to system outage

While Florida's tollways are operating normally, the tolls have not hit customers' accounts all month. The system upgrade was supposed to take place from June 6-11.

The number of unprocessed toll transactions appear to be climbing toward 100 million. While the Florida Turnpike Enterprise says it will process those tolls over the next few weeks "to better serve the customer and avoid unintended consequences," it has failed to respond to numerous 10Investigates questions about whether it would even be able to process those tolls sooner if it wanted.

FDOT and the turnpike enterprise have been tight-lipped about all things Sunpass this month, taking a full week to fulfill a 10Investigates' public records request for the Conduent contract.

Obtained Tuesday, the nearly 1600-page document reveals the company is due $287 million for the seven-year electronic tolling project; more than $100 million appears to have already been paid out through the end of the 2018 fiscal year.

FDOT and the turnpike enterprise still have not answered questions about adding extra customer service resources to deal with the growing number of customers frustrated over the delay.

While drivers can once again add funds to their accounts, they have no way of seeing how many toll charges they've racked up the last four weeks, nor can they access receipts they may need to document the tolls.

10Investigates will continue to ask questions about when transactions will be posted and how it will affect Floridians.

Send your stories and complaints confidentially to 10Investigates' Noah Pransky on Facebook or email him at npransky@wtsp.com.

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