Only A Few Days Left to Sign the Fix Muni Now Petition!

There’s only a few days left to sign the Fix Muni Now charter amendment, so if you haven’t already done so, find a volunteer gathering signatures and sign it. (if it’s from a paid one, hold your nose and do so, it’s better to sign a petition from a volunteer, though at this point, don’t let that stop you.) As always, Absentee Mayor Newsom is only supporting it now, hasn’t signed the petition, and is trying to take credit for it, even though he was silent when we needed him most. Hopefully his support won’t kill the thing.
Despite the heated rhetoric from the Mayor, TWU Local 250-A, various politicians and the like, all of whom have been all too happy to engage in the kind of rhetoric best suited for a schoolyard fight, this is just a minor correction to the Charter, that may end up in some cost savings for Muni. That is all.
This amendment says NOTHING about Muni pay, does not “bust unions” and simply has one holdout out of dozens of city unions finally do what the rest of them do – engage in collective bargaining. It will also allow Muni to send to impartial arbitration outdated “work rules” and have these things dealt with in a calm and rational manner.
Now, I will note a few things. As said before, there is nothing in this amendment regarding the actual pay of Muni operators. In fact, there’s no reason why in the collective bargaining process, a merit pay system that rewarded the really good ones with a true bonus couldn’t end up a part of their contract.
There’s no reason why in exchange for cutting overtime costs, pay might be bumped up slightly, so at least Muni management knows what’s going on. All of that could or could not happen as part of the natural collective bargaining process. So all the screaming bullsh!t from people calling this “racist” or whatever is just a sign that some people feel entitled to something, and don’t care who else they hurt in the process.
And, as always, let’s remember that Muni’s fiscal problems stem primarily from the loss of annual revenue from the State, and the lack of a stable local funding source to make the State irrelevant. Yes, the overtime costs and the myriad of old fashioned work rules are causing problems, but it’s only one part of the Muni Death Spiral.
Like cancer, if there was only one cause for all of the problems, fixing Muni would be simple. But like cancer, that’s not the case, so get ready for more fun on the ballot this year, and in years to come.
UPDATE: The Snitch blog at SF Weekly expertly calls out Mayor Newsom for his SOP of coming to the party late and taking credit for it only after it’s popular. Kinda like Healthy SF.

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One Response to Only A Few Days Left to Sign the Fix Muni Now Petition!

  1. @makfan says:

    Tonight was one of those quiet failures that make riding MUNI oh so much fun.
    I was trying to make it from Sunnyvale to see an LGBT film that started at Castro theatre at 9:30 pm. I couldn’t make Caltrain until the 7:44 pm train. That train arrived at 4th & King at 9pm. That seemed kind of tight, so I caught BART at Millbrae at 8:39 pm, arriving Civic Center at 9:12 pm. I considered getting off BART at 16th & Mission and high-tailing it to the Castro, but I had already walk 4-5 miles so decided to transfer at Civic Center. That was when the fun began.
    As I went up the escalator to BART, I heard the computer lady say that an N was approaching, followed by two J’s. The Next MUNI display at the agent booth said 6 minutes for an L and 46(!) minutes for a K. It was actually over 30 minutes for the first L train to arrive at Civic Center. An out-of-service 2-car train limped through the station (probably supposed to be an L, but who knows), but I lost count of the number of J trains that went through. I didn’t get to Castro station until just before 10 pm. I skipped the film. Apparently, nobody had the sense or authority to change at least one of those J trains into a K or L. I realize that they are currently only able to get to the Balboa yard by using the J tracks, but this was ridiculous. Sadly, it is not unusual.

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