Q:

What are some facts about the Southern California toll roads?

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Quick Answer

The Southern California toll roads are controlled by the Transportation Corridor Agencies, which are two entities established by the California legislature to handle the planning, financing and operation of these roads, as of 2015. These roads are accessible only through the use of the FasTrak payment tags or ExpressAccount and through the use of the One-Time-Toll option for non-registered road users.

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Full Answer

The Transportation Corridor Agencies is an organization formed by two government agencies: the San Joaquin Gills Transportation Corridor Agency and the Foothill/Eastern Transportation Corridor Agency. The TCA was formed as a quasi-governmental entity that functions without any direct taxpayer funding. The Southern California toll roads were financed through the issue of tax-exempt municipal bonds. However, since the bonds issued were non-recourse securities, neither the government nor the taxpayers are responsible for payment on the bonds in the case of a TCA default. All toll and fee revenues generated by the TCA are applied toward the retirement of outstanding debt obligations and ongoing improvements.

As of 2015, toll road users have three methods of payments. The prepaid FasTrak transponder, which is installed inside the vehicle, is deducted each time the car passes a TCA booth. The ExpressAccount system does not require a transponder but instead charges each user by registering his license plate number. The One-Time-Toll payment option allows infrequent users to make single toll payments online by using their license plate numbers.

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