Ballot measures addressing everything from Muni service to affordable housing could wind up before voters this November. Members of the Board of Supervisors introduced several charter amendments on Tuesday, which was the deadline to get them on the ballot.
Board of Supervisors President Aaron Peskin introduced a measure he said would fix the troubled Muni system and make it more environmentally friendly.
“This is a bold initiative to greatly curtail Muni’s carbon emissions and really set forth a radical plan for increasing the reliability of public transit,” Peskin said.
The measure includes a new goal for reduction of carbon emissions, removes the salary cap for transit operators so management will have more bargaining power to establish workrules, increases the number of managers that can be hired or fired at will and allows Muni to capture additional revenue from parking fines, parking meters and city-owned garages.
The labor union has criticized the measure as an attack on Muni’s workforce.
“Supervisor Peskin has some innovative ideas for Muni reform that are worth exploring,” Nathan Ballard, Mayor Gavin Newsom’s spokesman, said. “The next step will be to involve the work force and other stakeholders. The mayor looks forward to being a part of this conversation.”
Supervisor Jake McGoldrick introduced a charter amendment that would grant the board more control over the budget of the Municipal Transportation Agency, which oversees Muni.
The amendment would allow the board to adjust line items in the budget as well as add to the budget from other funding sources. Currently, the board can only vote up or down on MTA’s budget submission.
“The board gets blamed for the problems of Muni without people understanding that we have little to do with day-to-day operations of Muni and even less to do with their budget,” McGoldrick said.
Supervisor Chris Daly introduced a charter amendment that would automatically set aside any money that exceeds the projected tax collected from the real property transfer tax and use it for affordable housing needs.
McGoldrick also re-introduced a charter amendment — which never made it to the ballot last year for lack of support — that would eliminate odd-year elections.
“We will save a lot of money. But more importantly, we will actually have elections for key city posts at times when the greatest number of people vote,” he said.
Other charter amendments introduced include stricter rules on The City’s use of its surplus property to ensure the land is used exclusively for affordable housing developments.
The charter amendments introduced Tuesday will not be acted upon for 30 days, then hearings will be scheduled before Board of Supervisors committees. In order to make it onto the November ballot, a charter amendment needs to come before the full Board of Supervisors and receive at least six votes.
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