RALEIGH - State Transportation Secretaries Gene Conti (North Carolina) and Ananth Prasad (Florida) announced today that the states have reached agreement on electronic toll collection interoperability. The fundamental elements of the agreement will allow travelers from these states to use each other's electronic toll collection system without the need to enroll in any new programs or buy a new transponder. "This is an exciting advancement in the toll industry," said Secretary Prasad. "Separate toll systems will be able to provide seamless travel to those residents choosing electronic tolls as their preferred method of payment." This represents Florida's first out-of-state interoperability project."This is a significant step for motorists along the East Coast corridor, as North Carolina is a major link in creating interoperability between E-Z Pass states and Florida, "said Secretary Conti. "The Alliance for Toll Interoperability and the I-95 Corridor Coalition played a crucial role in making this step a reality."On the heels of this major inter-regional interoperability effort, the Georgia State Road and Tollway Authority (SRTA), the agency that manages Peach Pass, will join this effort for its Peach Pass customers following Florida and North Carolina's implementation. "We are thrilled to be a part of a customer-driven solution that will add value for all Peach Pass customers," says Dr. Gena Evans, Executive Director of SRTA. "It is important for us to continue to seek travel options that accommodate our customers in ways that are reliable and efficient. The ability to pay for tolls with one account in three different southeastern states is a major step forward in achieving that goal." North Carolina and Florida are currently working on the implementation schedule, which has an opening date of July 1, 2013. Florida's SunPass and North Carolina's Quick Pass holders will be able to use their home state transponders in each other's states. Tolls will be billed to the accounts established in their respective states. Georgia's implementation will follow Florida and North Carolina.