Voting on SFMTA contract for armed private security guards postponed

By Bay City News : kron4 – excerpt

SAN FRANCISCO (BCN) – The San Francisco Board of Supervisors postponed a vote today to approve a $38 million contract for private security guards for the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency because the contracts include $7 million for guards armed with handguns who are required to receive only 16 hours of training.

A number of the supervisors, including David Campos, Malia Cohen and Jane Kim, said that armed guards with limited training in heavily trafficked public transit areas may present a public safety hazard and doesn’t align with the city’s values… (more)

GG Bridge Toll Hikes Approved 15-2, Supes Campos and Breed Opposed

by streetsblog – excerpt

When the plan for much-needed toll hikes on the Golden Gate Bridge was approved Friday, the only opponents on the GG Bridge Highway and Transportation District Board of Directors were Supervisors David Campos and London Breed.

All other 15 members who voted, including Marin County reps, apparently understood the need to fund rising infrastructure costs for the bridge by increasing tolls for the drivers who use it. In recent years, the board tolls have not risen as quickly as fares for Golden Gate Transit, which has also seen service cuts — a pattern that unfairly burdens bus riders and induces more car traffic on the Golden Gate Bridge…

Under the plan approved by the bridge district, the $6 toll will rise to $7 on April 7 on its way to $8 by 2018. A 25-cent increase will go in place on July 1, 2015, with a similar boost each year until 2018, according to the Chronicle. The bridge board increased tolls beyond its original proposal, which didn’t include an increase in 2015. By adding a 25-cent hike in 2015, projected revenue was increased from $123 million to $138 million… (more)


The 2013 Streetsie Awards, Part 1

by : sf.streetsblog – excerpt

Now that the votes are in, it’s time to present the 2013 San Francisco Streetsie Awards, Streetsblog’s recognition of the year’s best and worst in livable streets…

Worst Political Trend: Bad Parking Policy Disguised as Populism
Parking garages in, parking meters out. That’s the position espoused lately by Supervisors Mark Farrell, Malia Cohen, and David Campos, who’ve been fighting parking meters and trying to force developers to trade apartments for car storage, under the pretense that this will make the city more affordable and livable. In fact, nothing could be further from the truth.
More parking in buildings, which Campos and Cohen have pushed for in recent projects, means higher rents, more car ownership, and traffic. Blocking meters, a fight taken up by Farrell and Cohen, prevents the SFMTA from setting prices in response to demand — the very purpose of the nationally-lauded and successful SFpark program, aimed at reducing needless traffic circling for parking. Unfortunately, this contingent recently persuaded the entire Board of Supervisors to hamstring the SFMTA’s ability to install new parking meters in a five-year contract. Pandering to poorly-informed parking warriors isn’t a populist cause, it’s a short-sighted political gambit that is hurting SF… (more)

There are so many misconceptions and wrong information in this article, we leave it to you to find them and point them out to the author if you are so inclined.

Lawmakers question use of operating funds for free Muni youth program

By: Will Reisman : – excerpt

Muni is poised to receive $6.7 million that could fund a free youth fare program, but some lawmakers believe the struggling transit agency should use the funds more productively…
With Muni’s recent struggles in mind, San Francisco supervisors Scott Wiener, Mark Farrell and Carmen Chu have asked the SFMTA to hold a public hearing to determine the best use of the $6.7 million. The trio, in a letter written to SFMTA transportation chief Ed Reiskin and Chairman Tom Nolan, cited Muni’s extreme need for system enhancements as reasons to consider investing the new money for other purposes…
Director Cheryl Brinkman said she would wait for a staff recommendation before deciding whether to support the use of funds for a free Muni youth program.
“Although I do support free Muni for low-income youth, we will need to see the full picture,” Brinkman said. “It would be fantastic to have enough funding to make needed improvements to the system that will benefit all riders, and fund free Muni for youth.”… (more)