HOBOKEN, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Even though there are signs on both the Garden State Parkway and the New Jersey Turnpike reminding drivers that come New Year’s Day they’ll be paying more to drive on the major roadways, many are still not in the know.
Whether drivers like it or not, a toll hike is going into effect at exactly 6:30 a.m. Sunday. It’s the second phase of a toll increase approved back in 2008.
In the new year, the average passenger vehicle toll will go up 53 percent on the New Jersey Turnpike, from $2.20 to $3.30, and from $0.70 to $1.05 on the Garden State Parkway, an increase of 50 percent.
Anthony Lawrence, who commutes from Jersey City to Manhattan, says the hike will easily cost him an extra $24 a week. add that up and you get nearly $1,250 extra per year in tolls.
“I’m going to take the streets. I can’t afford to pay a 50 percent increase,” he told CBS 2’s Ann Mercogliano.
The Authority says it needs the money to widen roads and restore bridges. Some commuters tell CBS 2 that’s something they’re willing to foot the bill for.
“I go all the way down to Exit 4, and I see that they are widening the roads and it is kind of helpful,” said Nilo Ibara of Jersey City. “From my point of view, I think it’s a good idea.”
Others, however, say they’d like to see the increase take a hike instead.
When the toll increase was approved three years ago by then-Governor Jon Corzine, a billion dollars of the money was meant to go towards the new rail tunnel to cross the Hudson.
Governor Christie stopped that project in 2010 citing budget concerns. The money was then slated to other state transportation projects.
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