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Hudson River tolls into NYC jump $1 Sunday

The George Washington Bridge is shown in this

The George Washington Bridge is shown in this file photo. (April 14, 2010) Photo Credit: AP

Driving across the Hudson River on the George Washington Bridge is now even more expensive.

Cash tolls for most vehicles on all Port Authority bridges and tunnels -- the George Washington, Bayonne and Goethals bridges, the Outerbridge Crossing and Lincoln and Holland tunnels -- are up $1, to $13. The tolls were raised at 3 a.m. Sunday.

The hike is part of a series of increases that eventually will raise the cash toll to $15 by 2015.

E-ZPass tolls will increase 75 cents to $10.25 during peak hours (6-10 a.m. and 4-8 p.m. weekdays, 11 a.m.-9 p.m. weekends) and $8.25 at other times. By 2015, E-ZPass tolls will be $12.50 and $10.50, respectively.

Tolls on the George Washington Bridge are collected in the eastbound lanes.

The George Washington Bridge and the Tappan Zee Bridge are the two main spans used by commuters in the lower Hudson Valley to cross the Hudson River. The Tappan Zee, which dates to 1955 and carries the New York State Thruway between Tarrytown and Nyack, is in the early stages of a replacement project that could cost up to $5.9 billion. It is administered by the State Thruway Authority.

Tappan Zee tolls stand at $5 for most vehicles, though discounts are offered through E-ZPass.

The Thruway Authority announced in August that tolls would need to be raised to $14 to pay the cost of building the new Tappan Zee, slated to open in 2017. Gov. Andrew Cuomo and others have criticized the proposed $14 toll, urging Thruway officials to consider a smaller increase.

The toll hikes put further pressure on drivers who are "already overburdened by excess tolls, fees, surcharges, high gas prices and gas taxes and a nearly depleted state highway fund," said Robert Sinclair Jr., AAA New York manager of media relations, in a release earlier this week.

AAA has filed a lawsuit challenging the toll hikes.

With an eye to improving the Port Authority's financial condition, toll increases were approved in August 2011.

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