SAN FRANCISCO—On Tuesday, November 10, it was reported that the Golden Gate Bridge in California is considering increasing its toll in order to avoid laying off employees.

Since the start of the pandemic, the Golden Gate Bridge has lost around $2 million from transit fares and bridge tolls. In addition, ferry rides decreased by 96 percent and bus rides by 75 percent.  Traffic at the Golden Gate Bridge fell by 30 percent.

According to a report by the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District, “after implementing significant cost saving measures, the District still faces a $48 million budget deficit (expenses exceeding revenues) for the current fiscal year.”  Funds for the Golden Gate Bridge under the CARES Act will be depleted by the end of November 2020.

Three options that the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District are considering, as stated in its report include:

  1. To “authorize the elimination of 205 positions.”
  2. To “establish a temporary COVID-19 toll surcharge of $2 on all southbound vehicles.”
  3. To “establish a temporary COVID-19 surcharge of $1.25 on all southbound vehicles” and will require a “one-day-a-week unpaid furlough of employees.”

San Francisco News reached out to Mayor London Breed for a comment, but did not hear back before print.