Leeville bridge tolls scheduled to go up Jan. 1

Regularly scheduled toll hikes for motorists using the Leeville bridge on La. 1 are set to take effect on Jan. 1, officials said Monday.

Most car and truck operators will pay $3 per round trip, up from $2.50.

The charge for most big-truck operators will rise to $15, up from $12.

The bridge crosses Bayou Lafourche and is just west of Grand Isle.

It is used to haul crude oil and natural gas supplies as well as fishing enthusiasts and others.

Toll revenue is supposed to pay most of the costs of the $365 million structure, which opened in 2009.

However, Legislative Auditor Daryl Purpera issued a report last week that said tolls are failing to generate enough revenue to pay for the bridge’s borrowing costs and that other money will be needed.

Officials of the state Department of Transportation and Development said last week that work is under way to refinance the debt and produce a payment plan that can be met.

The toll increases set to take effect on Jan. 1 stem from the original toll schedule between the state and its bondholders.