Friday, August 29, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Golden Gate Bridge to go to digital toll system

By
From page A2 | March 27, 2013 |

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Drivers approaching the majestic Golden Gate Bridge will experience something new for the first time in 76 years: no human toll collectors.

The toll takers were removed in favor of cheaper and faster electronic transponders, and a camera system photographs every license plate that comes through, mailing an invoice to each motorist who doesn’t prepay.

Those who fail to pay will receive warnings and could ultimately have a hold placed on their vehicle registration at the California Department of Motor Vehicles.

In addition to saving money, the move is expected to improve traffic flow on the majestic span that opened in 1937.

When their final shifts working on the bridge ended, the toll collectors forced their mouths into smiles, hugged each other tightly and cried as they left their booths for the last time.

Some were angry and said their contribution — helping people with directions, giving a warm greeting to a regular commuter — will be missed.

“Our DNA is embedded in this bridge … we are part of it,” said Jacquie Dean, a career toll collector who had worked on the burnt-orange span for 18 years before her last shift Tuesday. “Some customers still want to pay cash. They don’t want to be tracked and photographed.”

Many drivers have switched to the FasTrak devices that attach to a car’s windshield and allow motorists to speed through the toll booths for a dollar less than cash payers.

“It was a difficult decision and involved the loss of some very dedicated staff,” said Mary Currie, spokeswoman for the Golden Gate Bridge Highway and Transportation District.

The switchover is expected to save about $16 million in salaries and benefits over eight years. Nine toll takers will lose their jobs. Another 17 have either been placed in other district positions or have retired, Currie said.

The people who loved working on the bridge said the job was something they’d planned on keeping until retirement.

“I never thought that I would ever end my career at the bridge,” Dawnette Reed, 43, who started working in the bridge gift shop at 16 and, after a stint in the U.S. Army, became a toll collector at age 26.

“The bridge won’t be the same without us.”

————

By Jason Dearen. Follow Jason Dearen on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/JHDearen

Comments

comments

The Associated Press

.

News

Saving Putah Creek: a quiet concert at sunset

By Elizabeth Case | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Mr. Dolcini goes to Washington

By Tanya Perez | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Winton to be feted for her many years of community work

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Davis Innovation Center team fields questions

By Dave Ryan | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Researchers solve mystery of Death Valley’s moving rocks

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2 | Gallery

 
California extends review of $25B delta plan

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Assembly approves statewide ban on plastic bags

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

Celebrate the Senior Center at Sept. 9 luncheon

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Need a new best friend?

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3 | Gallery

Equestrian eventing competition slated

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Dinner, auction benefit Yolo County CASA

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Forum explores local mental health services

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Solar-cooking workshop set at Food Co-op

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Kids can sign up for a library card and get a free book

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

 
Explorit Science Center: Volunteers supercharge summer camp

By Lisa Justice | From Page: A4 | Gallery

Tee off for Davis’ continued prosperity

By Lily Holmes | From Page: A4

 
 
Bodega Marine Laboratory hosts open house

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5 | Gallery

Local group charts a year’s worth of beauty in flowers

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

 
Free blood pressure screenings offered

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

Name Droppers: UCD honors two of its own

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A6

 
Books, conversation and poetry at Logos

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

 
.

Forum

Let’s sell the MRAP on eBay

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: C2

 
Seeing both sides of ‘tank’

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: C2

What if we need MRAP?

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: C2

 
How could tank be helpful?

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: C2

 
Tom Meyer cartoon

By Debbie Davis | From Page: C2

Don’t sentence our police to death

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: C2, 1 Comment

 
Will Davis see river water?

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: C2

Travel buddy is getting too fat

By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

 
.

Sports

Forget the score; focus on the energy brought by Aggies

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1

 
Returning seniors, new faces lead promising DHS links squad

By Evan Ream | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Devil golfers return from Scotland with smiles on their faces

By Evan Ream | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Devils scrimmage with Sac

By Wayne Tilcock | From Page: B1 | Gallery

UCD-Stanford: the clock is down to counting the minutes

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1

 
Wire briefs: Aces cruise past Cats at Raley

By Wire and staff reports | From Page: B6

Sports briefs: DHS girls fall by the slimmest of net margins

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B6 | Gallery

 
.

Features

.

Arts

‘The November Man’: Who can be trusted?

By Derrick Bang | From Page: A9 | Gallery

 
B Street’s ‘The Ladies Foursome’ is aces

By Bev Sykes | From Page: A9 | Gallery

.

Business

Technology makes a great car better

By Ali Arsham | From Page: C1 | Gallery

 
.

Obituaries

Elaine Dracia Greenberg

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

 
Margarita Elizondo

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

.

Comics