South San Francisco ferry loaded with subsidies

By Phillip Matier and Andrew Ross : Chronicle Columnists – excerpt

That new ferry line to South San Francisco opened to a lot of fanfare, offering rides to and from Oakland and Alameda in less than 55 minutes.

What’s not being talked about is that for every $14 round-trip ticket sold, the public will be kicking in a subsidy of nearly $100…

People who pay taxes and tolls will be picking up the bill for an armada of costs for the new ferry over the next 20 years…


When is pubic transit too expensive? Is it right to charge taxpayers $50 per ferry ride? Is this on an average day when there are ferries are running at full capacity? Does that subsidy rate go up on slow days or is this the “assumed average” subsidy?

How much are we paying to subsidize the Muni?

County suddenly yanks $30 million in tax funds from San Francisco 49ers stadium

By Mike Rosenberg : – excerpt

Out of nowhere, Santa Clara County officials have yanked $30 million in tax funds promised for the San Francisco 49ers’ new Santa Clara stadium, saying they would rather spend the money on teachers than install “little televisions in the back of stadium seats.”…

The new state law gives counties complete control over doling out the property tax revenues from former redevelopment areas. At a meeting in Santa Clara City Hall on Friday, the oversight board voted 4-3 to keep the money from the 49ers and spend it instead on local governments and schools…


This should bring out the lawyers, but it does raise the possibility of altering spending decisions to meet new demands. What happens when a county favors spending money on schoolteachers and seismic retrofits instead of a ballpark? Who’s money is it?

SEIU San Francisco Protesting Mall Parking Lot

BY THOMAS MOYER : – excerpt

It looks like the SEIU are protesting in front of the parking garage at the downtown mall in San Francisco. If you know anything about this city, you will find that there are so many protests all the time somewhere in the city. But what caught my eye about this one is that they were protesting at the entrance and inside of the parking garage ticketing machines…


Hot or Not?

BY MATT FULLER, GRI : – excerpt

San Francisco street signs are getting a makeover. As you can see from the montage below, our street signs have decided to stop yelling at drivers and instead use their lower-case voice. Which is shocking at first glance, but has kind of grown on me the more I look at it…


I like the new signs but object the spending money on such things while the SFMTA is over budget. How much are they spending on the new street signs? Which part of the budget are they taking the money from?  Why aren’t they fixing the Muni instead?

No Tall Cars Allowed… But Why?

BY MATT FULLER, GRI : – excerpt

I was recently previewing a property in Noe Valley and saw the rather curious photo that you see below. It’s located on a residential street, on a hill, but not a particularly steep hill. So I’m hoping someone can explain to me why parking a vehicle over 6 feet high is prohibited on this particular block?

Did the neighbors rally city hall for a street sign so that the view from their front windows wouldn’t be blocked? Was there once an industrial company or business in the neighborhood that had really big vehicles parked on the street? Was it once a popular spot for tourist buses to park?

I’ve seen plenty of goofy street signs in San Francisco, including the current changes to street sign lettering in San Francisco. But I don’t think I’ve ever seen a street sign that prohibits the parking of a moderately tall vehicle on a residential street…