SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – Officials at the Golden Gate Bridge say they have targeted March 27, 2013 as the date they hope to switch exclusively to electronic tolls.

Human toll takers would be permanently replaced and cash would no longer be accepted as payment to cross the iconic span.

So how will drivers pay their way at the Golden Gate Bridge toll plaza?

For FasTrak drivers, the same electronic toll-taking device they’ve been using will continue to work. The added bonus – that discounted $5 FasTrak rate will still be in effect.

For those who don’t want to open a FasTrak account, the license plate will help to process your toll payment. Cameras at the toll plaza will capture license plate images as drivers pass through. The Department of Motor Vehicles tally drivers’ toll crossings and charge $6 per trip. Drivers can pay license plate-recorded charges online.

For those who don’t care for paying online, a bill will be sent to the address linked to the license plate, and payment will be due 21 days after that. A $25 penalty will be added for late payments.

Finally, to avoid getting billed, drivers can log on ahead a planned trip and make a one-time pre-payment on your license plate, up to 30 days before passing through the toll plaza.

32 toll takers are losing their jobs in this move, which was designed to help save the Golden Gate Bridge and Highway District money in the wake of a projected $66 million shortfall over the next five years.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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