Yesterday evening the Board of Supervisors voted to place Scott Wiener’s Charter Amendment assigning increased population-based funding to Muni—including for service needs—on the 2014 ballot. If passed, this will generate $22 million in additional funds in 2015-16, and $2-3 million more in 2016-17, with funding beyond that tied to whether a Vehicle License Fee is approved in the future.
There were 6 votes in favor: Supervisors Breed, Campos, Chiu, Cohen, Kim, and of course Wiener. Supervisors Mar, Tang, Yee, and Farrell voted against, with Avalos absent. Scott Weiner cited support on the issue from SFTRU, Sierra Club, Walk SF, and San Francisco Bicycle Coalition.
Getting this on the ballot is a huge win for SF Transit Riders. Your emails, phone calls, and even tweets helped to put us one huge step closer to more funding for increased frequency, capacity, and reliability on Muni. Thank you for your support and action!
Of course, now the real work begins. We helped to convince five supervisors, but we still need to convince a majority of San Francisco voters. Between this and the $500 million General Obligation Bond, the 2014 Ballot is a doozy for transit (not to mention the infuriating Restore Transportation Balance initiative).
Along with other transportation advocates, we will fight hard for both this Charter Amendment AND for the General Obligation Bond, since they have very different but complementary purposes. The G.O. Bond goes towards long-term capital improvements for transportation in general, while the Charter Amendment funds would go toward fleet acquisition and improvements for Muni, as well as service costs of increased capacity and enhanced frequencies, plus a portion for street safety improvements. All of us riders know that SF transit needs this funding and more to become the world-class system we all envision.