➤ “Adding to agony after car accidents,” The City, Sunday
Victims deserve better
My heart goes out to Jikaiah Stevens, who The San Francisco Examiner reported was seriously injured in a vehicle accident in September. Since the vehicle driver was only minimally insured, Stevens is stuck with huge medical bills and major difficulties in earning a living due to her injuries.
The sum of $15,000 is ridiculously inadequate as a minimum amount for personal-injury insurance for drivers. Our state should significantly increase this requirement. In addition, there is really no good reason why Stevens’ monetary problems could not be covered by a state fund. A couple of cents added to the gas tax should be more than sufficient to cover the costs for victims of underinsured drivers.
This fund is made all the more necessary by the 15 percent of California drivers who are uninsured, as reported in the article.
John M. Kelly
➤ “Tenants exploring rent-controlled rights,” The City, Tuesday
City hurt by rent control
The City now gets to feel the effects of rent control.
The Mayor’s Office of Housing says the Midtown Park Apartments is struggling from years of deferred maintenance from insufficient rental income. The City now wants to review the incomes of residents and tie that to rent.
Now that The City sees the issues with rent control, do you think it will review the laws for small-property owners? Doubt it!
➤ “Seattle’s best,” Sports, Monday
NFC game was real winner
The Monday sports page may have said “Seattle’s best: Dominant defense helps Seahawks rout Broncos to win the Super Bowl.” However, for 49ers fans, the game between the two best teams in professional football was played two weeks earlier in Seattle, where the Niners were cheated out of a last-minute win in the NFL Championship Game.
Not to take anything away from the Seahawks, but it looked like the Broncos’ players may have been celebrating the legalization of marijuana in Colorado one day too soon, resulting in the team going to pot.
➤ “Google launches trial ferry from the East Bay,” The City, Tuesday
Real shuttle regulation
Silicon Valley tech companies’ employee-transportation programs have given locals a rare opportunity to evaluate the performance of regulatory agencies with authority over our transportation network.
Here is how regulators stack up:
Water Emergency Transportation Authority: Negotiated $275 landing fee and five-day tryout.
San Francisco Port Commission: Negotiated a $50 landing fee and 30-day tryout.
San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency: Free pass for first six years and proposed $1 boarding fee (once they get around to it in six months or so).
In other regulatory doings: The San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission has just said move it to Google’s barge where it is building a big something without a permit.
The commission’s executive director, Larry Goldzband, also suggested the Treasure Island Development Authority faces the prospect of fines and enforcement proceedings for impersonating the SFMTA.