I'm a pretty well informed citizen of San Francisco. I read the news from various sources and keep up-to-date on my tweets; it's sad to see that our public transit agency wants to take a step backward in the wrong direction to hurt not just their customers, but send their overall reputation further down the grave that we call the "Central Subway."
I've heard word that there was a last minute long shot appeal to see if an environmental review was necessary to give the "10%" cut in services on Muni, yet I had a gut feeling that it wasn't going to go well; I was right, the board kicked it to the curb with a 7-4 vote.
What makes me even more frustrated is just how soon the "10%" cuts will actually happen. SF Weekly claims it will start May 1st, and the SF Gate's City Insider says May 8th; but regardless of what date it may be, May will be the worst in Muni's history.
How can Muni decide to take drastic cuts with so little notice? Does less than 17 days notice actually give Muni the balls to pull off a massive PR campaign to inform the public of their beloved transit service going to make drastic cuts?
Let me refresh Muni's memory on some blog entries that gained major attention for FAILURE TO PROVIDE AMPLE NOTICE:
- When Muni announced their so-called 10% cuts at their board meeting, they specifically targeted the 18-46th Avenue in a showboat attempt to say that service will be reduced from 20 minutes to a whopping 30 minutes mid-day, evenings, and weekends. I wrote a very serious in-depth analysis on why it was not fair to discriminate the 18-46th Avenue with 33% cuts while others are getting less than 10%.
- The most recent cuts happened on December 5, 2009, and I reported on November 24th that Muni has not made an effort to provide new published bus/train schedules in a timely manner and online planning programs were also not ready. This story alone spread like wildfire and it really caught Muni's attention very quickly.
- On November 26th, two days after I reported the failure of map planning programs, Google Maps was ready.
- On December 1st, just a few days away from the major changes, 511's online trip planner program was updated with Muni's changes, but there was no time schedules posted.
- I also gave a brutal punishing to Muni for failure to provide ample notice of an adult pass hike that was scheduled for January 1st. On November 5, 2009, I argued it was not fair to give such late notice of a pass hike because it would affect people who need to update their payroll deduction for their commuter benefits program. Just few days later (November 8th), I caught Muni in the act of updating their website about the pass hike.
You've already screwed-up December 5th's cuts, so why should be trust you to get the time schedules and trip planning software updates in a timely manner? This is especially true for me, the 18-46th Avenue passenger whose going to have to get the worst punishment while others who ride major lines may not even notice much of a difference.
Here's an additional posting showing evidence of Muni's PR failure: The PGA golf tournament at Harding Park where Muni only gave the public one day's notice of major bus re-routes for the 18-46th Avenue and (the former) 88-BART Shuttle. And even then, I did all the research and posted it faster than 511's alerts page.