Privatization Issues are on the agenda at the SFMTA CAC September 6 meeting

Thursday, Sept 6, 5:30 PMagenda
Room 7080, 1 South Van Ness SFMTA CAC Meeting

Item 7. The Commuter Shuttle Program status report
Several new Citizens’ Advisory Council members have been appointed and travel season is over. The MTA staff presentation will start soon after 5:30pm. at the conclusion of the opening formalities. Your Attendance is critical if you care about the Commuter Shuttle Program, your two minutes of public comments are appreciated. The supporters at past MTA Board meetings always show up in droves with mostly cookie cutter positive comments how convenient and the personal time savings of their commuter bus services. Disruption to the community is never mentioned. The PDF report

Item 8. The Motivate Bike Share program, discussion, and possible action. Your Attendance is critical if you care about the Commuter Shuttle Program, your two minutes of public comments are appreciated on this as well.
Two pdf handouts –
SF Expansion and Bikeshare In Your Community

If you can’t make it to the meeting and want your voices and opinions taken into account, send your letters and comments to the Board of Supervisors and the Mayor and the candidates for office who are running for the new Board positions. Use the authority in  Ordinanace 180089 to demand a hearing and an audit of the programs before any further erosion of our public access on our public streets is allowed.

IMG_3530.jpeg

Let the officials know how many empty GoBike stations you see in your neighborhood. Photo of late night GoBike truck at a station on Bryant and 17th Street shot by zrants.

The first order of business for SFMTA is to support the needs of Muni riders. How are these programs solving Muni problems and why are staff spending so much of the taxpayers’ time and energy supporting the corporations in their efforts to take over our public streets?

Here are some questions that you may want to ponder as you review the material.
What is the ratio of bikes to GoLive Stations and how much money has SFMTA collected from the GoBike program to date as part of the pubic/private enterprise arrangement? Will the contract that was signed with Motivate be extended to Lyft when the ride-share purchases GoBikes from Motivate? How have other cities dealt with these issues?

 

Are there plans to create cracks in the Private Commuter Bus program?

Notes from the Policy and Governance Committee meeting, February 17, 2017

The MTA Policy and Governance Committee of the MTA Board of Directors met Friday, Feb 17, 2017.  It appears they are developing a policy for handling the emerging transportation services such as Uber, Lyft, ride share,  car share, Private Commuter buses (shuttles), Chariot and what the future holds.  See the power point and the guiding principles connected to agenda Item 5 for clues on where the problems lie and a hint of what they may have in mind to resolve some of them.

Studies by the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC), the Bay Area County Congestion Management (CMA) agencies, and the VTA FLEX (last mile) indicate the current policies have failed. The increase in traffic and complaints about the programs point to the need for a regional evaluation and plan. A solution can’t come soon enough for most of us. Let’s hope they come up with something soon. Your comments and suggestions should be directed to the agencies involved. See this links on this page for contacts: https://discoveryink.wordpress.com/san-francisco-officials/

If you like you may comment here also. There are a few discussions on nextdoor on this topic as well.

The Teamsters Take on Tech Shuttle Unions

By Julia Carrie Wong : sfweekly – excerpt

When the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency’s controversial pilot program to allow Google buses (and Yahoo buses and Apple buses and Facebook buses) to use Muni stops for a small fee went before the SFMTA board in January 2014, neither Google, Yahoo, Apple, nor Facebook showed up to speak in defense of their commuter programs. The titans of Silicon Valley rarely stoop to conquer local regulatory bodies. Instead, the strongest voice in favor of tech shuttles that day came from Bauer’s Intelligent Transportation, the luxury bus and limousine company founded by Novato-born Gary Bauer in 1989. Over the course of the contentious hearing, representatives from Bauer’s touted their company as an important job provider to working class San Franciscans.

Bauer’s enjoys a cozy relationship with San Francisco’s political establishment. A Bauer’s VP stood behind Mayor Ed Lee when Lee announced the shuttle program in 2014, emails later revealed that Bauer’s believed it had a “handshake agreement” with the SFMTA to use Muni stops free of charge for the 10 years prior to the Google bus backlash, and Bauer’s buses ferried attendees at this year’s US Conference of Mayors from the Hilton to a tour of Uber’s headquarters. (Bauer’s did not respond to inquiries for this story.)

But that relationship is about to be tested by the Teamsters union, which is determined to ensure that the jobs created by tech shuttle companies are union jobs…

It’s a major vindication for the Teamster’s that on Aug. 21, the NLRB filed a petition for a 10(j) against Bauer’s, alleging that the company was guilty of the “unlawful foisting upon its employees of a textbook, sham ‘company union.'” The NLRB’s petition accuses Bauer’s of “making a mockery” of workers’ rights, describes the PCDU as a “charade,” and criticizes Bauer’s “carefully orchestrated scheme to prevent unionization.”

According to the petition, Bauer’s acted on the advice of its legal counsel, which explained to Bauer’s how to go about forming a company union. A Bauer’s supervisor, Clarence Murdock, persuaded employees to sign a blank piece of paper, “not disclosing that their signatures would be used to furnish a veneer of legitimacy to Bauer’s recognition” of the faux-union. Bauer’s then recognized the union and imposed a collective bargaining agreement — without any input from the workers supposedly being represented.

These charges come, not from the union, but from a federal agency, which states that “the facts overwhelmingly demonstrate” violations of the law by Bauer’s.

“Bauer knew a union campaign was inevitable, and sought an alternative he could control,” the petition states.

That may sound like John D. Rockefeller, but Gary Bauer is no John D. Rockefeller.

As for the Teamsters, at the SFMTA meeting, Doug Bloch warned the board members: “This fight is coming to Muni stops. It doesn’t look like it’s going away, and we’re not going away.”… (more)

Protesters block Silicon Valley shuttles, smash Google bus window

By Sean Hollister : theverge – excerpt

The Google bus is a symbol of inequality

One of the perks of working at a major Silicon Valley company is a shuttle ride to work. But as housing prices rise in the San Francisco Bay Area, angry activists are targeting those shuttles to protest the region’s gentrification. In Oakland, protesters attacked a Google bus today, smashing a window and distributing fliers reading “Get the fuck out of Oakland” to Google employees on board…
One of the perks of working at a major Silicon Valley company is a shuttle ride to work. But as housing prices rise in the San Francisco Bay Area, angry activists are targeting those shuttles to protest the region’s gentrification. In Oakland, protesters attacked a Google bus today, smashing a window and distributing fliers reading “Get the fuck out of Oakland” to Google employees on board.

My Gbus got hit by protesters in Oakland and they broke a window. pic.twitter.com/VGCyhBLgyd

— Craig Frost (@craigsfrost) December 20, 2013

And in San Francisco, demonstrators blocked an Apple bus, holding signs and even carrying a wooden coffin bearing the message “Affordable housing.”
“We want the ruling class, which is becoming the tech class, to listen to our voices and listen to the voices of folks that are being displaced,” said one SF protester…
These aren’t isolated incidents. Just last week, some of the same San Francisco activists protested another tech industry bus at the same street corner, though an alleged Google employee at that rally turned out to be a fake. A small group of protesters also smashed a Google bus pinata back in May

Catherine Bracy gave a speech at the Personal Democracy Forum that does a good job of explaining the current economic inequality in Silicon Valley, and some reasons why the Google bus might inspire a certain degree of hatred. You can watch it here. (more)

If you think people are upset now, wait until the Federal unemployment checks stop coming. The pitchforks are out and will not be going away soon.
The best explanation we have seen so far for why the anti-eviction folks are attacking the buses came from someone on the local news who said, “We want the folks on the bus to join us in protesting the problems.”
Media can easily ignore the poor folks in the Mission who are losing their homes, but they can’t ignore anything that threatens the tech industry. Next trip to the Bay Area Obama might want to talk to the leaders of the protestors and listen to their concerns as well as the CEOs of Silicon Valley.

 

RELATED:
Via pandodaily
Source Craig Frost (Twitter, 1)(2)(3)
SF and Oakland, activists block tech buses to protest displacement
Indy Bay
ReutersKQED
oakland san francisco politics shuttle bay area bus protest transportation gentrification silicon valley Google

Ripping on Silicon Valley Shuttles Won’t Solve SF’s Parking-Induced Problems

by Aaron Bialick : sf.sftreetsblog.

The corporate shuttles that whisk tech workers from the highly-valued urban habitat of San Francisco down to the burgeoning suburban campus job centers of Silicon Valley are the newest additions to San Francisco’s streets. But while it’s become convenient for critics to point the finger at this increasingly-visible symbol of gentrification as the cause of everything from skyrocketing rents to blocked Muni stops, that anger is misdirected… (more)

Reasons the shuttles are popular:
They are sized to fit the demand.

They meet their schedules.

And so far as we know they don’t cost the taxpayers a dime. Let’s see Muni compete with that.

Here’s A Map To Silicon Valley’s Cushy Private Buses

By Megan Rose Dickey :businessinsider.com – excerpt

Taking the bus isn’t usually considered a luxury. But Silicon Valley companies like Apple, Google, Facebook, eBay, and Electronic Artstransport their employees to and from work, no matter where they live in San Francisco, on Wi-Fi equipped private buses with cushy, leather seats.
San Francisco-based design firm Stamen Design tracked those companies’ bus routes to figure out where their employees live and how many people rely on those private corporate buses, Geoffrey Fowler of the Wall Street Journal reports…
Stamen’s research estimated that the buses transport roughly 7,500 tech employees a day, Monday through Friday, and concluded that the unmarked buses ferry a third as many commuters as ride on Caltrain, a commuter train that travels between San Francisco and San Jose… (more)

 

Know Your Corporate Buses, You Know, Because SFMTA MUNI DPT Sucks: Genentech and Google San Bruno

Here’s Genentech in its current can’t miss-it-livery with the DNA or the RNA or what have you. Boy, what do you think the area transit foamers did after they saw this design for the first time?…  And here’s the rare Google Bus what doesn’t go to Mountain View – it was labeled SBO-SFO, I assume because it goes to the YouTube facility in the part of San Bruno what didn’t get blown up by PG&E:… I was surprised to see the Genentech bus appear to maneuver to drop off just one employee. What other big local outfits drive interstate-type buses about the 415? Apple? That’s the only one I can think of… Keep on keeping on, our corporate overlords…

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