Saturday, April 23, 2011

I'd like to say I was surprised at Muni's latest idea...

But I'm not. I mean, what else can we expect from an agency that cannot fulfill its core function. Or from a leader of that agency who has demonstrated time and time again that he does not want the job, and demonstrates it consistently by begging to be hired as far away as possible while neglecting his job here.

What am I talking about?

Apparently Muni, after decades of ignoring a law on the books, has chosen now to suggest increasing parking fees in San Francisco. As some of you may know, almost every garage in San Francisco offers a deal that if you park by a certain time, usually 9 or 10 a.m., then you will get a prices break. This can be, for San Francisco, significant, because the fees can run from $35 dollars for the day and up. Combine this with parking ticket fines of $65 in the downtown area and $55 in the rest of the city, and its difficult to find a reasonable way to park your car. Under the MTA's proposal, this will be abolished.

However, San Francisco continues to operate under the delusion that because it has decreed a "transit first" policy, that it actually has a transit system that meets the needs of the people living and working in the city. Apparently, someone has not clued in Nathan Ford at Muni or the Supervisors that simply decreeing it does not make it happen.

Sad facts: the buses don't run any near to their target goals. Service has been cut and fares have been increased.

So who is going to take the hit for it? The people who commute into the city and the people who are so frustrated with inefficiency and unreliability of Muni that they drive instead.

Gee thanks Muni.

How about we do something that doesn't increase the cost to those who foot the bill here in San Francisco. How about we start by ensuring that the fares get collected, regardless of race or economic status (which for Muni would be a revolutionary concept apparently). How about fixing the travesty that is the contract with the operator's union (or better yet just breaking the union entirely).

Then, once Muni has cleaned house, and dealt with the real issues rather than grasping at "low hanging fruit", then come back to the community and ask for more our money.

Nathan Ford and the Operator Union Local 250-A need to be dealt with. One needs to lose his job. The other needs to be shown that they are not worth what they think they are based on their performance.

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