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A last-ditch effort to stave off San Francisco Municipal Railway service cuts via a flat-out rejection of the MTA budget didn’t work for the Board of Supervisors last year, but this isn’t 2009 anymore.

It’s 2010, with a new budget, a new round of service cuts slated for Muni riders on Saturday and — well, nothing else is new. Even so, the Board will try again with the rejection option, after Board President David Chiu introduced Tuesday a motion that would allow the Board of Supervisors to reject the MTA’s budget and sent it back to the MTA board’s drawing board for improvement.

“This is a power that has never been used…. but it is a power this Board should be able to exercise,” Chiu said. “We can do better than this budget that’s in front of us.”

Chiu also followed up on the recent audit of Muni’s work orders; that audit found that many city departments request and receive money from Muni without submitting much in the way of paperwork — paperwork including details such as “This is how much money we want, this is why, and this is what we’re spending it on.” Chiu asked Tuesday the City Attorney to draft a law that would require city departments to submit a detailed written request to the MTA before cashing in on a work order windfall.

The Appeal solicited Supervisor Sean Elsbernd — the board’s stalwart fiscal conservative and chief proponent of a ballot measure that would reform Muni operators’ compensation package — for an off-the-cuff assessment of Chiu’s measure.

“Let’s say of all eleven of us do vote for it [the motion to reject] — what happens?” asked Elsbernd, who knows that whether or not the monies asked for by departments come from Muni, they’ll still need to come from the general fund. “Nothing changes.”

Nothing save the length of hearings and public comment to come. In the bag of political tricks, brinkmanship is stashed somewhere between the nuclear option and the tire iron — it’s last-ditch, it’s desperate, but sometimes it’s the only choice left. And sometimes it works.

Buckle in, kids — it’s going to be a great month!

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  • Xenu

    Is this even a choice at this point? The budget HAS TO be rejected. Cutting service on a massively overcrowed system is a horrible, horrible idea.

  • Xenu

    Is this even a choice at this point? The budget HAS TO be rejected. Cutting service on a massively overcrowed system is a horrible, horrible idea.

  • Greg Dewar

    What Xenu said.

    Seriously. The 300,000 man and his bosses at Room 200 did nothing to fix the revenue situation and have embraced downsizing the system to the point where it’s useless and will drive people away. The Board needs to stop fooling around, and do something to make the MTA move or be moved. Stop debating endless foreign policy, Supervisors, and kick some ass for the owners of Muni – us!

  • Greg Dewar

    What Xenu said.

    Seriously. The 300,000 man and his bosses at Room 200 did nothing to fix the revenue situation and have embraced downsizing the system to the point where it’s useless and will drive people away. The Board needs to stop fooling around, and do something to make the MTA move or be moved. Stop debating endless foreign policy, Supervisors, and kick some ass for the owners of Muni – us!

  • bloomsm

    A ballot initiative seems to be the only way to go. Charter Amendments. Remove lock-step pay increases and subject drivers to the same economic/labor conditions we all go through. Stop the entitlement nonsense.

  • bloomsm

    A ballot initiative seems to be the only way to go. Charter Amendments. Remove lock-step pay increases and subject drivers to the same economic/labor conditions we all go through. Stop the entitlement nonsense.

  • smskater

    They will not reject.

  • smskater

    They will not reject.

  • 1Mada

    Assuredly, the SF Supes must take control and do what is righ for San Franciscans, period. The citizens of San Franciscans are suffering enough without having to be kicked in the shins and find that the going issues, is imperative to support Muni Drivers rather than find and keep appreciative transportation at a pace and economics that everyone and i mean everyone can afford. We are paying citizens and deserve to have full respect of our transportation needs met realistically and positively.

    San Franciscans are looking to the Board of Supervisors to be on the citizens side. Transportation IS for the citizens of this beautiful city. We should not be worried about the drivers and upper level management of MUNI who is by the way making more monies in fact than many of our good citizens.

    Public Transportation is our only and main way of getting around and addressing the many needs of our daily lives. If anyone is entitled, it is the good citizens of the City of San Francisco, who deserve on time service and a transportation service of employees who care about the mainstay of workers of our city, families, bread winners, mothers, elderly, our disabled.

    Thank you Board of Supervisors for realizing the importance of our needs IS full citified transportation for our daily lives. We look forward to you the Board of Supervisors doing what is right for your city and citizens!

  • 1Mada

    Assuredly, the SF Supes must take control and do what is righ for San Franciscans, period. The citizens of San Franciscans are suffering enough without having to be kicked in the shins and find that the going issues, is imperative to support Muni Drivers rather than find and keep appreciative transportation at a pace and economics that everyone and i mean everyone can afford. We are paying citizens and deserve to have full respect of our transportation needs met realistically and positively.

    San Franciscans are looking to the Board of Supervisors to be on the citizens side. Transportation IS for the citizens of this beautiful city. We should not be worried about the drivers and upper level management of MUNI who is by the way making more monies in fact than many of our good citizens.

    Public Transportation is our only and main way of getting around and addressing the many needs of our daily lives. If anyone is entitled, it is the good citizens of the City of San Francisco, who deserve on time service and a transportation service of employees who care about the mainstay of workers of our city, families, bread winners, mothers, elderly, our disabled.

    Thank you Board of Supervisors for realizing the importance of our needs IS full citified transportation for our daily lives. We look forward to you the Board of Supervisors doing what is right for your city and citizens!

  • generic

    amen.

  • generic

    amen.

  • citi-zen

    What would really be great – and perhaps would help our supervisors really understand the issues – is if all supervisors committeed to using Muni for at least a week, and maybe even a full month!

  • citi-zen

    What would really be great – and perhaps would help our supervisors really understand the issues – is if all supervisors committeed to using Muni for at least a week, and maybe even a full month!