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Sunshine Skyway Reopens With Higher Toll in Effect

Published Wednesday, June 27, 2012 9:00 am

BRADENTON – The Sunshine Skyway Bridge has reopened, but travelers may be surprised when they learn it will cost more to cross it. No, the state is not seeking to make up revenue lost by the longest closure in more than a decade due to strong winds caused by Tropical Storm Debby. The new cost is $1.25.

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The increases actually went into effect Sunday, prior to FHP's decision to close the bridge. The 25 cent rise in toll fare is the result of a state law that requires the fare to be indexed for inflation.

Increases will impact the four toll plazas owned by the state Department of Transportation the (Sunshine Skyway, Pinellas Bayway, Alligator Alley and the Beachline Expressway) as well as a dozen of others owned by the Florida Turnpike Enterprise.

In a related press release, Florida’s Turnpike Enterprise Executive Director Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti said, “The additional revenues collected as part of the toll rate indexing will provide transportation funding to provide much needed relief to already congested corridors. This will be accomplished by adding lanes and converting toll booths to an all electronic system, resulting in the added benefit of improved safety.”

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You all better check you change on the Southbound lane. There is an elderly lady there that gives you $.25 change when you give her 42.00. and says " Here is your $.75 change" Multiply that times several hundred cars during a few hours, and, she has a healthy supplement to her income. CHECK YOUR CHANGE !!!
Posted by Tom White on May 30, 2013

I for one feel fortunate that it is only a $0.25 increase. I used to live in Baltimore where about 10 years ago the tolls for the two harbor tunnel and the harbor bridge went from $1.00 to $2.00. Last month my wife and I visited Baltimore for the first time in two years. Guess what? The tolls increased from $2.00 to $3.00. We ended up driving through the city a lot that week we were there... saving about $18 or so in tolls.
Posted by Mark Chadwick on June 29, 2012

Just for the record, while it's true that we have not seen an inflation rate of 25% this year--the toll has been a dollar for a very long time. I found news clippings online indicating that the toll has been a dollar ever since the new bridge opened for traffic in the early 80s.

Even more interesting is the fact that a July 17, 1957 St. Pete Times article indicates that authorities were looking at reducing the toll from the current (in 1957) $1.75.

Factoring in the inflation, $1.75 in 1957 dollars amounts to $14.31 today!

Here is the link to the St. Pete Times article:
Posted by Jonathan Sabin on June 29, 2012

Taxation without Representation! Another RIP-OFF! Our elected representatives and those responsible for this increase have lost sight of why there was a Revolution against the British OVERTAXATION back in 1776. Here comes July 4th, a good time to reflect and think about where we are headed concerning future TAXES. (LIKE $5,000.Fines imposed and paid to the I.R.S. for not adhering to Obama's Healthcare. Another TAX!) Failure by our elected representatives to control and audit SPENDING leads to higher taxes.
Posted by Victor I. Coveduck on June 28, 2012

A toll hike from $1.00 to $1.25 is a 25% increase. Inflation is nowhere near that.
Posted by Joe McDermott on June 27, 2012

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