The Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge Commission (DRJTBC) has approved its first toll in a decade, raising tolls for most passenger vehicles from $1 to $3, reports Sarah Cassi for Lehigh Valley Live.
The increases were approved by an 8-1 vote. New Jersey Commissioner Lori Ciesla, who also serves as a Warren County commissioner, was the lone “no” vote.
The increase is “an infrequent event, not entered into without purpose and need, and consequential for the commission’s patrons,” said Joseph Resta, the commission’s executive director.
For passenger cars, the tolls would increase on seven bridges this April to $3 for cash-paying passenger cars, $1.25 for E-ZPass customers. The hike includes the two in PA-NJ connections in Bucks County: the I-295 Scudder Falls Toll Bridge in Morrisville and the Lambertville Bridge in New Hope.
New Jersey Commissioner Yuki Moore Laurenti said she was reluctantly approving the increases. “This is a difficult time for our traveling public and the commission,” she said. “Our bridges have suffered a substantial drop in revenue from passenger cars as commuter traffic has dried up. The impact on drivers of passenger cars is relatively mild, with one exception: People who don’t have EZ-Pass.”
The pandemic, statewide shutdowns and changes in jobs and commuting meant the DRJTBC lost $14.5 million in revenue last year, and toll collections never returned to the pre-COVID norm.