Authorities consider toll hikes on seven Bay Area bridges

Late this spring, Bay Area voters could get the chance to decide if tolls on seven bridges should increase.

The Metropolitan Transportation Committee's Bay Area Toll Authority will receive a report on Wednesday recommending a toll hike of as much as $3 a trip, which would mean that crossing the Bay Bridge during rush hour would cost $9. For Vallejo residents who work in San Francisco, for example, their daily cost  would be $17 because the commute demands they cross two bridges.

The money would finance a $4.45 billion slate of transit and highway improvements, according to the "Regional Measure 3" language. If the measure is passed, the hike would be phased in over six years, starting with $1 increase in January of 2019. By year 2025, the $3-hike would be in effect.

That committee will vote on whether to put the toll increase on the June ballot.

If the committee approves the idea, voters in all nine Bay Area counties would get to decide the measure. 

That’s even though drivers in Alameda, Contra Costa and Solano counties are the ones most frequently crossing the bridges. Art La Riviera of Benicia told KTVU on Wednesday said the hike would be tough - it seems like gas and tolls cost more, but salaries are not going up to match.

The bridges are: The Antioch Bridge, Benicia-Martinez Bridge, Carquinez Bridge, Dumbarton Bridge, Richmond-San Rafael Bridge, Bay Bridge and the San Mateo-Hayward Bridge. 

The Golden Gate Bridge would not be affected, since it is operated by its own district, not the state.