Toll takers axed from iconic bridge

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The Golden Gate Bridge, in San Francisco, California

San Francisco’s famous Golden Gate Bridge’s toll booths will likely be empty by the end of next year.

The bridge district’s board of directors voted 13 to two to replace the span’s 32 toll-takers with an all-electronic toll system in September 2012.

The Marin Independent Journal reports the move is aimed at cutting costs as the district seeks to close a 89 million US dollar budget deficit.

The change is expected to save about 16 million US dollar up to 2020 in salaries and benefits.

About two-thirds of Golden Gate drivers use FasTrak transponders to pay tolls and will not be affected by the change.

The all-electronic system will use video cameras to capture the licence plates of drivers without transponders, who will be sent a six US dollar bill for each toll crossing.

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