If you’ve checked your SunPass account in the last month, you may have noticed some missing charges. Feeling lucky? Think again. Since early June, transponders are logging tolls, but transactions have not processed because of system maintenance (i.e. the SunPass saga). So even though we have been accruing toll charges, we can’t see records of them and haven’t had to pay up … yet.
FIRST THINGS FIRST, WHAT DO YOU MEAN BY SUNPASS SAGA? Why thank you, pretend question-asker, we have some answers for you. Maintenance work on SunPass customer service systems that was only supposed to last a week has dragged on for a month and a half. The contractor responsible, Conduent, has a questionable past, such as screwing up toll collection systems in other states. Heading into the third year of their seven-year $287 million contract, the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) says they won’t pay another cent until Conduent fixes the mess it made.
WHAT SHOULD WE EXPECT? In the meantime, an email sent on July 3 to SunPass users said that the toll transaction system was working again and we’d start seeing transactions on our accounts. As of yesterday, 59 million of the 100 million pending transactions have been processed. The FDOT hopes that 8 million transactions will be processed each day to make up for lost time, which is double the usual number.
SHOULD WE BE FREAKING OUT? Since transactions are being processed double time, some people are afraid that they’ll wake up one morning and find a month’s worth of charges in their account. The July 3 email from SunPass implied that this would not happen, saying charges would be posted gradually, oldest first. But since we aren’t the FDOT, we can’t say for sure what will happen. So we’ll answer this question with “TBD.”
ANY INSIDER SCOOP, PULPTOWN? As a matter of fact, we got SunPass on the tele THREE times in hopes to get some conclusive information, but each time we got a different story. What we gathered from them is:
If you are telecommuting today with other Orlandoans, zoom on over and shoot the shit with us at 4:45 p.m. ET on a live video chat. Even though working from home can be awesome, it can also be a bit lonely so we’ll be there to help you download the scuttlebutt (gossip) and socialize before you clock out for the day. You’ll want to download Zoom in advance, or just call in on your phone. Be there or be square.
Calling all local filmmakers. How hard could it be to write, shoot and edit a short film in just two days? If you’re a filmmaker, let us know by participating in the world’s oldest and largest timed filmmaking competition, 48 Hour Film Project. The annual international competition, Filmapalooza, will be held in Orlando in March 2019. (Orlando Weekly)
Defaulting on student loans seems to be the default. Paying off student loans is no easy task, and the numbers are proof of that: 39,924 graduates have defaulted on loans since starting payment in 2014. Full Sail and Everest Universities have the largest number of bachelor degree defaulters. If you are in this situation, you shouldn’t wait to figure out your options. (Florida Business Daily)
Remember when Downtown Disney felt a little outdated? Not anymore. Disney Springs has been opening new shops and restaurants like crazy, and apparently there is more to come. On the docket: Chicken Guy, a counter service restaurant serving up fried chicken delicacies; a tapas restaurant on the waterfront; and an all-new immersive NBA experience that will draw inspiration from arenas around the nation. (Orlando Weekly)
You don’t have to venture far to see a starry night. Next time you’re in Mount Dora, ask locals to point you in the direction of “Starry Night.” Nancy Nemhauser and Lubomir Jastrzebski painted a mural of Vincent van Gogh’s famous work of art on the side of their house because their autistic son loves it so much. They were fined $10,000 for violating city code. After nearly a year-long battle, a settlement has been reached and the city has agreed to repay $15,000 to the attorneys and to remove the lien on the couple’s home. (WFTV 9)
Make room for bikers? Audubon Park’s most notable five-lane road, Corinne Drive, doesn’t leave much room for pedestrians or bikers, and the majority of locals voted to keep it that way. MetroPlan Orlando offered six revised road options, with 30 percent voting to keep it five lanes and about 20 percent opting for a three-lane future that would increase sidewalk space, bike lanes, and landscaping (the rest chose between the remaining four choices). MetroPlan disclosed that reducing the number of car lanes could increase morning commute by a half hour. The next round of revisions should be in by the end of summer. (Orlando Sentinel)
SATURDAY, JULY 28: Come join us next Saturday for Florida Miracle, a dance marathon benefiting the Central Florida Miracle Network! Food, music, and entertainment will be provided. Just bring your AWESOME dance moves.
🎨 A blend of Asian and Western art (Loch Haven Park)
🏌 90’s night at Topgolf (I-Drive)
🎨 3rd Thursday gallery hop! (Downtown)
📎 Win $250 at The Office trivia (Downtown)
👩💼 Meet our candidates running for office (over a drink or two) (Downtown)
☀️ Calling all Paddleboardin’ lovin’ ladies (SoDo/Edgewood) 🆕
🍻 Bringing the Jewish community together over beer (Audubon Park)🆕
🎄 Christmas in July? Yep. (Celebration)
🍷 Yoga + wine to benefit immigrants and refugees (Mills 50)
🎉 Rrrrr you ready for a good time? Check out this theme night (Ivanhoe) 🆕
🌅 Enjoy science after sundown (Loch Haven Park)🆕
🍻 Get your pub crawl on, 80’s style (Downtown)
📽 Ballet on the big screen (Winter Park)
🇧🇪 Celebrate Belgium…get your waffles! (Sanford)
🍳 Brunch all night! (South Orlando)
💻 This is for all you Orlando bloggers (and wannabes!) (East Orlando)
🇧🇪 Beer and chocolate for Belgian independence (SODO)
🧘♂️ Tackle your anxiety with yoga (Audubon Park)
🌮 It’s a food truck bazaar! (Avalon Park)
🚜 Join Fleet Farming in gardening (Audubon Park)
🎉 Don’t miss the Thornton Park block party (Thornton Park)
🎊 …or this Live Vibe block party (Windermere)
Going to one of these? Take us with you! Email a pic to firstname.lastname@example.org or tag #pulptown on Instagram. See more upcoming events on our events page, and add your own events with a Pulptown membership.