munipiece2.jpgThat’s right, it’s time for another of our intermittent reports on Mayor Gavin Newsom’s now majorly delayed appointments to the SFMTA Board of Directors, that is, the unpaid governing body of Muni, parking, and all that other fun stuff which has been two members short since April. Here’s your tl;dr version: no appointments have been made, and no one’s saying why it’s taking so long.

Previously on As The MTA Board Turns: Back in March, the mayor announced that he’d be appointing an “everyman” as one of his two SF MTA board appointments to replace Dr. James McCray, Jr and Shirley Breyer-Black, whose terms ended in April.

Initially, Newsom spokesperson Tony Winnicker said we’d meet the new appointments before May 4. Since Appeal dance writer Becca Hirschman had interviewed for the everyman slot on April 27, that didn’t seem unreasonable.

But no appointments were made, and the board was so short-staffed they had to cancel their next meeting on May 18.

Winnicker then told Streetsblog they could expect the appointments the week of May 25, and told us the week of May 31 would be the big week.

So! Here we are, it’s June 11, and the MTA board is still operating (when it is operating) without two of its members. What’s up with that? We went back to mayoral spokesperson Winnicker (a Muni rider himself, we have on good authority) to see what he could tell us:

Tony! You must be so sick of my asking this — but any word on what’s taking so long on the SF MTA board appointments? I know you’ve set deadline after deadline, but that they’re getting missed (which, as a former PR person myself, I can only imagine is quite frustrating!). Is there light at the end of the (Muni tunnel of your choice)?

His response:

Appointments are imminent, Eve, and they will be well qualified additions to the MTA. In the meantime, despite the vacancies, I’d point out we’ve been making good progress at working to roll back the service cuts and focusing on what’s important to riders.

And of course, it’s probably unreasonable for us to expect Winnicker to tell us what the holdup is, especially since he’s clearly been expecting this announcement for more than six weeks. But you’ve got to wonder, right? That’s why we made that poll there on your left — so vote there or present your theories in the comments.

the author

Eve Batey is the editor and publisher of the San Francisco Appeal. She used to be the San Francisco Chronicle's Deputy Managing Editor for Online, and started at the Chronicle as their blogging and interactive editor. Before that, she was a co-founding writer and the lead editor of SFist. She's been in the city since 1997, presently living in the Outer Sunset with her husband, cat, and dog. You can reach Eve at

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