SAULT STE. MARIE – As if you needed further proof the Loonie doesn’t go as far as it used to, some customers of the Sault Ste. Marie International Bridge will see higher toll rates starting on Oct. 1 for trucks and four-wheelers.
According to officials, the reason for increasing what’s paid with Canadian dollars is the continued decrease in the value of the currency, plus twice yearly mandated adjustments required to keep toll equity to within five cents in relation to currency exchange rates. This means tolls paid in U.S. dollars are staying put.
For trucks, this will result in a hike from $5.25 per axle to $5.65 per axle, according to Dan Weingarten, spokesman for the Michigan Department of Transportation.
“Customers can pay in the currency of their choice,” he told Today’s Trucking. “They are not restricted to one currency or the other. The bridge does not allow for payment in mixed currency, though.”
For a typical five-axle truck this means tolls will increase from $26.25 to $28.25.
There is one break and it’s for empty trucks. They are only charged for rolling axles.
Passenger vehicles will also see higher tolls when paying in Canadian currency, increasing from $4.10 to $4.40.
The U.S. currency passenger rate remains unchanged at US$3.50 and US$4.50 per axle for trucks or US$22.50 for a typical five-axle tractor trailer.
The new three tier Canadian currency commuter rate will increase as well to $3.08, $3.52, $3.96. U.S. currency commuter rates remain unchanged at US$2.45, US$2.80 and US$3.15.
The intergovernmental agreement, under which the bridge operates, mandates that Canadian currency toll rates be adjusted every April and October, if the change in the average currency exchange rate during the first six months of the preceding seven months is large enough.
The operation and maintenance of the International Bridge is totally self-funded, primarily through bridge tolls, and is not subsidized by any state, provincial or federal government entity.
For a complete list of International Bridge tolls, visit the bridge website.
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