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SF Muni Fare Increase Threatened Again

by Muni rider
Despite the fact that we suffered a large fare increase in fares for San Francisco buses and trains (SF Muni Railway or Muni) just over 1 year ago, we are again threatened with a fare increase from $1.25 to $1.50 with admittedly no increase in service. We need your protests now to demand that the large Financial District Corporations pay a profits tax to Muni.
Despite the fact that we suffered a large fare increase in fares for San Francisco buses and trains (SF Muni Railway or Muni) just over 1 year ago, we are again threatened with a fare increase from $1.25 to $1.50 with admittedly no increase in service. We need your protests now to demand that the large Financial District Corporations pay a profits tax to Muni.

See SF Chronicle, 11/30/04, Bay Area section, at:
http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2004/11/30/BAGODA3ECF25.DTL

The hearing of the Municipal Transportation Agency may be next Tuesday. The next scheduled meeting of the MTA is
DECEMBER 7, 2004 at 4 p.m.
at City Hall, Polk & McAllister, Room 400.
The calendar of meetings is at:
http://www.sfmuni.com/cms/brd/mta/mtaindx.htm

We need you there to demand:
(1) NO FARE INCREASE

(2) The MTA or Board of Supevisors set up a transit district consisting of the Financial District to tax the profits of the large corporations. This was on the ballot a few years ago, but not a large enough campaign was done to have it passed. It is very feasible and has lots of support.

(3) The Board of Supervisors, which oversees all departments and decides the budget, cut the 2200 member police budget to the minimum the law requires, and transfer those funds to Muni.

(4) The MTA be told to have Congressperson Nancy Pelosi, now House Minority Whip, Congressperson Lantos, and Senators Boxer and Feinstein, get the federal money we need to run Muni, without which there is no San Francisco.

(5) The Board of Supervisors set up a progressive city income tax for all those who earn over $125,000 a year from employment in San Francisco, whether or not they live here. San Francisco is providing transit and many other city services to thousands of people who work here but do not live here, and many of those people have high incomes and can easily afford to pay a 1% tax to the city. San Francisco is in fact the largest business center of the region of 7 million people known as the San Francisco Bay Area. If people are going to commute, and take their income earned here out of the City, they have to be taxed 1% if they earn at least $125,000 a year to help make this business center possible. And, of course, those who live here and have high incomes can also pay. There are sufficient people making that kind of money residing in and/or working in San Francisco that all of our budget problems will be eliminated by this small progressive income tax on the rich.

Incredibly, the president of the Transport Workers Union (Muni transit operators), William Sisk, supports the fare increase! Somebody needs to tell him real fast that fares are a regressive tax on the workingclass, that our federal tax dollars pay for most of the public transit budget while fares are just a small contribution, and that we must have unity of the Muni transit operators and Muni bus and train riders if we are to stop all fare increases and make the rich corporations pay, of which there are many in San Francisco, and which benefit the most from public transit which brings workers to their offices!

As to the service, it is polite to say it is stuck on being on time only 70% of the time. I have seen buses packed like sardines during rush hour evenings on Sutter Street (4 to 6 p.m.) for which there is no excuse since that is a regular commute run for several buses with predictable greater need at that period of time, Monday through Friday. Some lines are some times of the day are very frequent, others are not, and many are packed during the rush hour. Be sure to bring your stories of inadequate service to the MTA meeting.
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Kevin Keating
Wed, Dec 1, 2004 2:06PM
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