The San Francisco Board of Supervisors, acting as the city’s transportation authority, will vote today on whether to approve a congestion pricing study report.

If approved, the city would begin further study of a toll program that could charge motorists entering the Financial District and those coming in from the southern gateway a fee amounting to $6 during peak commute hours.

The idea has some residents and leaders in San Mateo County up in arms.

“It will have a tremendous effect on San Mateo and Santa Clara County residents,” Daly City Councilman David Canepa said. “Six dollars a day amounts to $1,500 each year and, in this economy, I don’t know any students or workers that have the means to spend that.

“It is essentially a thinly veiled tax whose sole beneficiary is the city and county of San Francisco,” Canepa said. “Our cities and counties to the south have found a way to live within our means, and San Francisco should do the same.”

In 2007, the San Francisco County Transportation Authority began the Mobility, Access and Pricing study to evaluate the possibility of a congestion-pricing plan modeled after those in London, Stockholm, Singapore and Rome.

The study identified an area in the northeastern portion of the city as the highest-performing congestion-pricing scenario, with a western boundary at Laguna and Guerrero streets and a southern boundary at 18th Street. It also considered including the southern gateway to San Mateo County.

The possibility of adding San Francisco’s southern access points to the toll zones prompted 18 leaders from San Mateo County to draft a letter of disapproval that was sent to San Francisco officials on Friday, Canepa said.

“Some people say that this is just a study and there is no need to get your antlers up, but the bottom line is that if you want to do a study in the Financial District, then do it in the Financial District,” Canepa said. “There is no need to look at the southern gateway.”

State Assemblyman Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo, has vowed to block the proposed fees and will appear before the board at its 11 a.m. meeting today.

Kristen Peters, Bay City News

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