SF supervisors to decide on Peninsula toll study

December 13, 2010 12:11:29 PM PST
A vote by San Francisco's board of supervisors on Tuesday could put the city on the road to charging a new toll for Peninsula drivers. It's just a proposal so far, but, it would cost $3 to enter the city and $3 to leave. But, it appears two can play this game.

San Mateo County is not only going to propose its own toll, it's going to double down with a toll of $6 each way, meaning if everybody does what they say they want to do, commuters could be paying $9 each way between San Mateo and San Francisco counties.

Where some people just see vehicles, some members of the San Francisco board of supervisors see opportunity. The toll would cost $3 per car coming into or leaving the city during morning or evening commute hours. It would add up to about $80 million per year.

Not everyone sees it as opportunity, some see it as highway robbery.

"This amounts to $1,500 per year for San Mateo County residents going into San Francisco. It is absolutely nonsensical," said Daly City Councilmember David Canepa.

There would be no toll booths, rather, automatic number plate recognition technology set up on I-280, Hwy 101 and Skyline Boulevard.

Canepa says it's an idea intensely unpopular with businesses and elected officials in San Mateo County who have written a letter to the San Francisco board of supervisors to protest the proposal. But if that's not enough to get the supervisor's attention, San Mateo County officials say they will propose a toll of their own - $6 each way for every vehicle coming into and out of their county.

"I hate to do this, but they have left us no choice if they approve this legislation. And it's a tit for a tat and its petty, and it's silly, but the arrogance of San Francisco needs to be controlled and we need to move forward," said Canepa.

ABC7 News asked people from both counties what they thought of the proposed tolls in San Francisco.

"I really don't like it. It's the only freeway that is pretty much a shortcut to Costco," said San Francisco resident Jayson Dangilen.

"What impact would it have on the way you drive?" asked ABC7's Terry McSweeney.

"I wouldn't go if I didn't have to," said Daly City resident Jim Morrison.

"You wouldn't go to San Francisco?" asked McSweeney.

"Right - exactly," said Morrison.

Tuesday's vote is only to fund a study of the plan. The legislation would also need approval from the state legislature and governor. If approved it would go into effect in 2015.

San Francisco Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi, who wrote the proposed legislation, was unavailable for comment.


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