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47-11-1401.2.


47-11-1401.2.
   
   A. For purposes of this section:
   
   1. "Authority" means the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority;
   
   2. "Commission" means the Oklahoma Tax Commission;
   
   3. "Electronic toll collection system" means a system of collecting
   tolls or charges which is capable of charging an account holder the
   appropriate toll or charge by transmission of information from an
   electronic device on a motor vehicle to the toll lane, which
   information is used to charge the account the appropriate toll or
   charge;
   
   4. "Owner" means any person, corporation, partnership, firm, agency,
   association, or organization who, at the time of the violation and
   with respect to the vehicle identified in the notice of toll evasion
   violation:
   
   a. is the beneficial or equitable owner of the vehicle,
   
   b. has title to the vehicle,
   
   c. is the registrant or co-registrant of the vehicle which is
   registered with the Oklahoma Tax Commission or similar registering
   agency of any other state, territory, district, province, nation or
   other jurisdiction,
   
   d. subject to the liability limitations set forth in paragraph 12 of
   subsection B of this section, uses the vehicle in its vehicle renting
   and/or leasing businesses, or
   
   e. is a person entitled to the use and possession of a vehicle subject
   to a security interest in another person;
   
   5. "Photo-monitoring system" means a vehicle sensor installed to work
   in conjunction with a toll collection facility which automatically
   produces one or more photographs, one or more microphotographs, a
   videotape or other recorded images of each vehicle at the time it is
   used or operated in violation of toll collection regulations;
   
   6. "Toll collection regulations" means those rules and regulations of
   the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority or statutes providing for and
   requiring the payment of tolls and/or charges prescribed by the
   Authority for the use of turnpikes under its jurisdiction or those
   rules and regulations of the Authority or statutes making it unlawful
   to refuse to pay or to evade or to attempt to evade the payment of all
   or part of any toll and/or charge for the use of turnpikes under the
   jurisdiction of the Authority; and
   
   7. "Vehicle" means every device in, upon or by which a person or
   property is or may be transported or drawn upon a highway, except
   devices used exclusively upon stationary rails or tracks.
   
   B. 1. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, there shall be
   imposed monetary liability on the owner of a vehicle for failure of an
   operator thereof to comply with the toll collection regulations of the
   Oklahoma Turnpike Authority in accordance with the provisions of this
   section.
   
   2. The owner of a vehicle shall be liable for a civil penalty imposed
   pursuant to this section if the vehicle was used or operated with the
   permission of the owner, express or implied, in violation of the toll
   collection regulations, and such violation is evidence by information
   obtained from a photo-monitoring system. However, no owner of a
   vehicle shall be liable for a penalty imposed pursuant to this section
   where the operator of the vehicle has been convicted of a violation of
   toll collection regulations for the same incident.
   
   3. A certificate, sworn to or affirmed by an agent of the Authority,
   or facsimile thereof, based upon inspection of photographs,
   microphotographs, videotape or other recorded images produced by a
   photo-monitoring system shall be prima facie evidence of the facts
   contained therein and shall be admissible in any proceeding charging a
   violation of toll collection regulations. The photographs,
   microphotographs, videotape or other recorded images evidencing such a
   violation shall be available for inspection and admission into
   evidence in any proceeding to adjudicate the liability for the
   violation. Each photo-monitoring system shall be checked bi-monthly
   for accuracy, and shall be maintained, adjusted or replaced if
   necessary to ensure the systems are operating properly.
   
   4. An owner found liable for a violation of toll collection
   regulations pursuant to this section for a first violation shall be
   liable for a monetary penalty of Twenty-five Dollars ($25.00); for a
   second violation within eighteen (18) months of the first violation,
   shall be liable for a monetary penalty of Fifty Dollars ($50.00); and
   for a third or any subsequent violation within eighteen (18) months of
   the first violation, shall be liable for a monetary penalty of
   Seventy-five Dollars ($75.00).
   
   5. An imposition of liability pursuant to this section shall be based
   upon a preponderance of evidence as submitted. An imposition of
   liability pursuant to this section shall not be deemed a conviction as
   an operator and shall not be made part of the motor vehicle operating
   record of the person upon whom such liability is imposed nor shall it
   be used for insurance purposes in the provision of motor vehicle
   insurance coverage.
   
   6. a. A notice of toll evasion shall be sent by registered mail to
   each person alleged to be liable as an owner for a violation of toll
   collection regulations. The notice shall be mailed no later than
   forty-five (45) days after the alleged violation. A manual or
   automatic record of mailing prepared in the ordinary course of
   business shall be prima facie evidence of the receipt of the notice.
   
   b. A notice of toll evasion violation shall contain the name and
   address of the person alleged to be liable as an owner for a violation
   of toll collection regulations pursuant to this section, the
   registration or the license tag number of the vehicle involved in the
   violation, the location where the violation took place, the date and
   time of the violation and the identification number of the
   photo-monitoring system which recorded the violation or other document
   locator number.
   
   c. Notice of toll evasion violation shall be prepared and mailed by
   the Authority or its agents and shall contain information advising the
   person of the applicable monetary penalty and method of payment
   thereof and the manner and the time in which the person may contest
   the liability alleged in the notice. The notice of toll evasion
   violation shall contain, or be accompanied with, an affidavit of
   nonliability and information of what constitutes nonliability,
   information as to the effect of executing the affidavit and
   instructions for returning the affidavit to the Authority and shall
   also contain a warning to advise the persons charged that failure to
   contest in the manner and time provided shall be deemed an admission
   of liability and that the penalty shall be imposed and may be
   collected as authorized by law. Additionally, the notice of toll
   evasion violation shall contain a notice to the registered owner that,
   unless the registered owner pays the toll evasion penalty or contests
   the notice within twenty-one (21) days after receipt of the notice of
   toll evasion violation or completes and files the affidavit of
   nonliability, the renewal of the vehicle registration shall be
   contingent upon compliance with the notice of toll evasion violation.
   
   d. If the toll evasion penalty is received by the Authority and there
   is no contest as to that toll evasion violation, the proceedings under
   this section shall terminate.
   
   e. If the registered owner fails to pay the toll evasion penalty as
   required in this section, or fails to contest the violation as
   provided in subparagraph a of paragraph 7 of this subsection, the
   registered owner shall be deemed liable for the violation by operation
   of law. The toll evasion penalty and any administrative fees or
   charges shall be considered a debt due and owing the Authority by the
   registered owner and the Authority may proceed to collect such
   penalty, fees or charges under paragraph 9 of this subsection.
   
   7. a. Within twenty-one (21) days after receipt of the notice of toll
   evasion a person may contest a notice of toll evasion violation. In
   that case, the Authority shall do the following:
   
   (1) the Authority shall investigate the circumstances of the notice
   with respect to the contestant's written explanation of reasons for
   contesting the toll evasion violation. If, based upon the results of
   the investigation, the Authority is satisfied that the violation did
   not occur or that the registered owner was not responsible for the
   violation, the Authority shall maintain an adequate record of the
   findings of the investigation. Within thirty (30) days of receipt of a
   notice of contest the Authority shall complete such investigation and
   mail the results of the investigation to the person who contested the
   notice of toll evasion violation, and
   
   (2) if the person contesting a notice of toll evasion violation is not
   satisfied with the results of the investigation provided for in
   division (1) of this subparagraph, the person may, within fifteen (15)
   days of the mailing of the results of the investigation, deposit the
   amount of the toll evasion penalty and request an administrative
   review. An administrative review shall be held within ninety (90)
   calendar days following the receipt of a request for an administrative
   review, excluding any continuance time. The person requesting the
   review may request and shall be allowed one continuance, not to exceed
   twenty-one (21) calendar days.
   
   b. The administrative review procedure shall consist of the following:
   
   (1) the person requesting an administrative review shall indicate to
   the Authority his or her election for a review by mail or personal
   conference and may provide materials in support of the contest of the
   results of the investigation,
   
   (2) upon ten (10) days' written notice mailed to the contestant, the
   administrative review shall be conducted before an examiner designated
   to conduct review by the Authority's governing body or Director of the
   Oklahoma Turnpike Authority. In addition to any other requirements of
   employment, an examiner shall demonstrate those qualifications,
   training, and objectivity prescribed by the Authority's governing body
   or Director as are necessary and which are consistent with the duties
   and responsibilities set forth in this act,
   
   (3) the officer or person authorized to issue a notice of toll evasion
   violation shall be required to participate in an administrative
   review. The Authority shall not be required to produce any evidence
   other than the notice of toll evasion violation or copy thereof, a
   photograph of the rear of the vehicle, information received from the
   Commission identifying the registered owner of the vehicle, and a
   notarized statement from the person reporting the violations. The
   documentation in proper form shall be considered prima facie evidence
   of the violation, and
   
   (4) the review shall be conducted in accordance with paragraph 5 of
   this subsection and in accordance with the written procedure
   established by the Authority which shall ensure fair and impartial
   review of contested toll evasion violations. The examiner's final
   decision shall be in writing and shall be delivered personally or by
   registered mail to the contestant within ten (10) days of the review.
   A manual or automatic record of mailing prepared in the ordinary
   course of business shall be prima facie evidence of the receipt of
   such decision.
   
   8. a. Within twenty (20) days after receipt of the final decision
   described in division (4) of subparagraph b of paragraph 7 of this
   subsection, the contestant may seek review by filing an appeal to the
   district court having jurisdiction in the county in which the
   contestant lives, where the same shall be heard on the record. A copy
   of the notice of appeal shall be served in person or by first-class
   mail upon the Authority by the contestants. For purposes of computing
   the twenty-day period, the Code of Civil Procedure, Section 2006 of
   Title 12 of the Oklahoma Statutes, shall be applicable.
   
   b. The conduct of the hearing on appeal under this section is a
   subordinate judicial duty which may be performed by referees, masters
   or other subordinate judicial officials at the direction of the
   district court.
   
   c. If no notice of appeal of the Authority's decision is filed within
   the period set forth in subparagraph a of this paragraph, the
   examiner's decision shall be deemed final.
   
   9. Except as otherwise provided in paragraphs 10 and 11 of this
   subsection, the Authority shall proceed under one or more of the
   following options to collect an unpaid toll evasion penalty:
   
   a. the Authority may file an itemization of unpaid toll evasion
   penalties and administrative and service fees with the Commission for
   collection at the time of registration of the vehicle pursuant to
   paragraph 17 of this subsection, or
   
   b. the Authority may contract with a collection agency to collect
   unpaid toll evasion penalties, fees, and charges.
   
   10. The Authority shall not file a civil judgment with the district
   court relating to a toll evasion violation which has been filed with
   the Commission unless the Authority has determined that the
   registration of the vehicle has not been renewed for sixty (60) days
   beyond the renewal date and the notice has not been mailed by the
   Commission pursuant to paragraph 17 of this subsection.
   
   11. If an owner receives a notice of toll evasion violation pursuant
   to this paragraph for any time period during which the vehicle was
   reported to the police department as having been stolen, it shall be a
   valid defense to an allegation of liability for a violation of toll
   collection regulations that the vehicle had been reported to the
   police as stolen prior to the time the violation occurred and had not
   been recovered by such time. If an owner receives a notice of toll
   evasion violation pursuant to this paragraph for any time period
   during which the vehicle was stolen, but not yet reported to the
   police as having been stolen, it shall be a valid defense to an
   allegation of liability for a violation of toll collection regulations
   pursuant to this paragraph that the vehicle was reported as stolen
   within two (2) hours after the discovery of the theft by the owner.
   For purposes of asserting the defense provided by this subsection it
   shall be sufficient that a certified copy of the police report of the
   stolen vehicle be sent by first- class mail to the Authority and the
   district court having jurisdiction.
   
   12. An owner of a vehicle to which a notice of toll evasion violation
   was issued pursuant to paragraph 6 of this subsection shall not be
   liable for the violation of the toll collection regulations provided
   that the owner sends to the Authority the affidavit of nonliability
   described in paragraph 6 of this subsection, within twenty-one (21)
   days after receiving the original notice of toll evasion violation.
   Failure to send such information within the time period shall render
   the owner liable for the penalty prescribed by this section. If the
   owner complies with the provisions of this subsection, the operator of
   the vehicle on the date of the violation shall be subject to liability
   for the violation of toll collection regulations, provided that the
   Authority mails a notice of toll evasion violation to the operator
   within ten (10) days after receipt of such information.
   
   13. In connection with the preparation and mailing of a notice of toll
   evasion violation, the Authority shall ensure adequate and timely
   notice to all electronic toll collection system account holders to
   inform them when their accounts are delinquent. An owner who is an
   account holder under the electronic toll collection system shall not
   be found liable for a violation of this section unless the Authority
   has first sent a notice of delinquency to the account holder and the
   account holder was in fact delinquent at the time of the violation.
   
   14. Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit the liability
   of an operator of a vehicle for any violation of toll collection laws
   or regulations.
   
   15. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, all photographs,
   microphotographs, videotape or other recorded images prepared pursuant
   to this section shall be for the exclusive use of the Authority in the
   discharge of its duties under this section and shall not be open to
   the public nor be used in any court in any action or proceeding
   pending therein unless the action or proceeding relates to the
   imposition of or indemnification for liability pursuant to this
   section. The Authority shall not sell, distribute or make available in
   any way, the names and addresses of electronic toll collection system
   account holders, without the consent of the account holders, to any
   entity that will use the information for any commercial purpose.
   
   16. a. Except as provided in subparagraph c of this paragraph, the
   Commission shall refuse to renew the registration of any vehicle if
   the registered owner or lessee has been mailed a notice of toll
   evasion violation, the Authority has transmitted to the Commission an
   itemization of unpaid toll evasion penalties, including administrative
   fees, pursuant to paragraph 9 of this subsection, and the toll evasion
   penalty and administrative fee have not been paid pursuant to
   paragraph 8 of this subsection, unless the full amount of all
   outstanding toll evasion penalties and administrative fees, as shown
   by records of the Commission are paid to the Commission at the time of
   application for renewal.
   
   b. The Authority shall issue a notice of disposition of toll evasion
   violation to a lessor, if the lessor provides the Authority with the
   name, address, and driver's license number of the lessee at the time
   of the occurrence of the toll evasion violation.
   
   c. The Commission shall renew the registration of any vehicle if the
   applicant provides the Commission with the notice of disposition of
   toll evasion violation issued pursuant to subparagraph b of this
   paragraph for clearing all outstanding toll evasion penalties, fees
   and assessments, as shown by the records of the Commission, and the
   applicant has met all other requirements for registration.
   
   17. The Commission shall include on each vehicle registration renewal
   notice issued for use at the time of renewal, or on an accompanying
   document, an itemization of unpaid toll evasion penalties, fees and
   assessments, showing the amount thereof and the date of toll evasion
   relating thereto, which the registered owner or lessee is required to
   pay pursuant to paragraph 16 of this subsection.
   
   18. a. Except as provided in subparagraph b of this paragraph, the
   Commission shall remit all toll evasion penalties, fees and
   assessments collected, after deducting the administrative fee
   authorized by paragraph 19 of this subsection, for each notice of toll
   evasion violation for which toll evasion penalties, fees and
   assessments have been collected pursuant to paragraph 16 of this
   subsection, to the Authority. Within forty-five (45) days from the
   time penalties, fees and assessments are paid to the Commission, the
   Commission shall inform the Authority which of its notices of toll
   evasion violation have been collected.
   
   b. For each notice of toll evasion for which toll evasion penalties,
   fees and assessments have been collected by the Commission pursuant to
   paragraph 16 of this subsection, the Authority is due an amount equal
   to the sum of the unpaid toll, administrative fees, other costs
   incurred by the Authority that are related to toll evasion, process
   service fees, and fees and collection costs related to civil debt
   collection. After deducting the Commission's administrative fee
   authorized by paragraph 19 of this subsection, the Commission shall
   promptly pay to the Authority the amounts due the Authority for unpaid
   tolls, administrative fees, other costs incurred by the Authority that
   are related to toll evasion, process service fees, and fees and
   collection costs related to civil debt collection.
   
   19. The Commission shall assess a fee for the recording of the notice
   of toll evasion violation, which is given to the Commission pursuant
   to paragraph 9 of this subsection, in an amount, as determined by the
   Commission, that is sufficient to provide a total amount equal to at
   least its actual costs of administering paragraphs 16, 17 and 20 of
   this subsection.
   
   20. Whenever a vehicle is transferred or not renewed for two (2)
   renewal periods and the former registered owner or lessee of the
   vehicle owes a toll evasion penalty and administrative fees for a
   notice of toll evasion violation filed with the Commission pursuant to
   paragraph 9 of this subsection, the Commission shall notify the
   Authority of that fact and is not required thereafter to attempt
   collection of the toll evasion penalty and administrative fees.
   
   This legislation shall not be construed to affect in any way the power
   which the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority possesses to establish tolls and
   other charges in connection with their turnpike facilities, including
   the authority to establish a one-way toll collection system for any of
   its facilities or a toll discount structure for certain classes of
   patrons using any of its facilities.
   

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