JEFFERSON, La. -- Louisiana Treasurer John Kennedy joined local leaders at the Yenni Building in Jefferson Parish to kick off the Refund the Tolls program.
A new law moved the responsibility of giving back $7.6 million to Crescent City Connection toll payers to the treasurer's office.
The old refund program under the Department of Transportation and Development got bogged down in long lines, paperwork and tax forms.
Kennedy promises a quick turnaround.
“You don't have to go stand in line somewhere,” he said. “You don't have to wait out in the hot sun. All you have to do is fill out this one page form, copy your driver's license, send it to us and wait for your check.”
“DOTD is charged with spending money. They do a good job building our roads in the state of Louisiana,” said state Rep. Jeff Arnold, D-Algiers. “But the treasurer’s office has the unclaimed property program and they're charged with giving people their money back.”
An estimated 100,000 toll payers are now owned refunds.
“On the day that the judge in Baton Rouge ended the tolls, DOTD took $30 out of my account, my VISA account. I'm sure it did that to a lot of people,” said state Rep. Pat Connick, R-Marrero.
Toll money not refunded after a year will go to the Algiers-Canal Street Ferry.
“I do have some concern about it. I hope we can, not only with these dollars, but to find some additional dollars to help keep the ferries operational,” said state Sen. Ed Murray, D-New Orleans.
Since the Treasurer's program started July 1, 1,600 toll payers were refunded more than $75,000.
According to DOTD, it distributed more than $520,000 in customer refunds to nearly 13,000 customers before transferring the duty to Kennedy's office.