Return to San Francisco and Budget Armageddon...Make Your Voice Heard Now!
I'm back! After a whirlwind tour of Washington DC, New York City (by way of bullet train) and some of the finest layover airports in America, I'm back. While I was able to sort of keep up on The Twitter with many of you and all, consistent Internet access was a hassle, and I wasn't able to post like I wanted. But thanks to the awesome guest bloggers, the site did not go stale. (BTW, there will be plenty of opportunities to guest blog for the site soon so feel free to apply now for a future gig).
Because AT&T fouled up my new home's internet connection, I'm writing this quick post now at a Starbuck's on Irving, mostly to do a quick hit on the impending MUNI budget FAIL we're facing right now.
I've been reading some of the proposals, and they all seem to fall into the "evil or stupid" categories. It's very clear that the SFMTA really doesn't have a clear idea of what they're doing, and are just running the numbers without really thinking about how to maintain the system in a time of economic troubles. Getting rid of N Judah service on weekends to the waterfront? WTF? It was a disaster when they tried it before - who in their right mind would think this is a good idea, especially now that it's baseball season? Ugh.
Nowhere have they even bothered to come up with new, stable revenue sources. Nor do they seem to have any real plan to improve collecting the money they're already owed. They're getting federal stimulus money to build ticket machines, for example, but aren't going to have the people to service them. And there's no talk of giving up the billion-dollar Subway To Nowhere either, or its pricey contract steered to ex-MUNI employees.
And again, we don't see anyone holding Mayor Gavin Newsom (who authorized the illegal looting of the 2007 Measure A money to fill the pockets of city bureaucrats), Green Governor Arnie, and Democrats in the Legislature (who voted to kill MUNI funding every year for 5 years, and cut all transit funding entirely from the bloated state budget) accountable for their role in crippling MUNI - all while wearing green ties and talking happy green talk to a willing audience on the road (usually via SUV).
I'm working on a more detailed article that I'll post once the dust settles from my (busy) trip out east. For now, I wanted to post a link to Jaime Whitaker's blog post at the Examiner, which has the times, dates and places for tomorrow's Armageddon meeting, and other meetings as well.