Out-of-town child care providers can now qualify for the San Francisco residential parking program, but the mothers who pushed for the initiative hardly considered Tuesday's ruling a victory.
The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency board of directors approved a proposal to exempt nannies from residential-parking program restrictions. However, the passage was loaded with stipulations, including one in which families must secure the support of 50 percent of the neighbors on their block before a permit can be issued.
Christine Hinton, one of several mothers who addressed the board, was baffled by the decision. She lives on the 1000 block of Green Street, a stretch that includes two massive condo complexes.
“I don’t even know how it will be possible for me to gain access to those buildings to issue the petition,” Hinton said. “The whole point of this program was to help out working mothers. This is just increasing the burden on us.”
Each household in The City's 27 residential parking zones can qualify for permits for up to four cars. Under the measure approved Tuesday, one of those four could be used for a child care provider who does not live in the neighborhood.
Several board members expressed concern that giving parking permits to nannies would go against San Francisco's transit-first policy.
Board member Cheryl Brinkman said the measure could bring increased vehicle traffic to The City. The measure was only approved under a nine-month pilot program.
Roxanne Stachon, a Russian Hill mother who spearheaded the initiative, said the ruling was “anti-family.”
“It’s insane,” Stachon said. “This sends an even stronger anti-family message than before. They’ve basically acknowledged that there is a need of this permit, but they're making us convince our entire block that our kids are worthy of it.”
One out of every five San Francisco parking spaces is covered by a residential parking program.
27: Neighborhoods in The City with residential parking program
80,000: Residential permits
441,541: Total parking spaces (paid and unpaid) in San Francisco
$98: Cost to purchase residential parking permit
4: Permits per household