Supe Proposes $1-3 Event Surcharge To Aid “overwhelmed and effectively defunct” Muni

A San Francisco supervisor Tuesday asked for a study of a proposal that would add a small surcharge to tickets for large-scale sports and entertainment events to help fund the city’s public transit system.

Supervisor Scott Wiener asked for the city controller’s office to assess the economic impact of a fee between $1 and $3 that would go toward maintaining the San Francisco Municipal Railway system.

“Sporting events, concerts and live performances are part of San Francisco’s economic and cultural vitality and we want to make sure that we’re fully supporting these events with robust and reliable public transportation,” Wiener said.

Elsewhere

Muni surcharge sought for big SF events [Chron]

The fee would apply to San Francisco Giants games, events at the proposed waterfront arena, as well as large outdoor festivals like Outside Lands in Golden Gate Park and the music festival on Treasure Island, according to Wiener.

He said the revenue from the surcharge, which would be added onto the regular price of tickets, could create up to $22 million annually for Muni’s coffers, which could be used to pay for four new light-rail vehicles per year or rehabilitate up to 18 vehicles already in the system.

Wiener said the Muni Metro subway system in particular is already “often completely overwhelmed and effectively defunct” during a large event, a situation that would only deteriorate if a new waterfront arena is approved and built in the next few years.

“Muni and particularly the subway is at a breaking point right now,” he said. “That breaking point is going to get worse and if we don’t begin planning now for how we are going to fund and grow and ensure the system, then we are going to be in a world of hurt.”

Once the city controller returns with an assessment of the proposal, Wiener said he plans to go to various stakeholders to discuss how to implement such a surcharge.

Mayor Ed Lee said he would consider the proposal as well as any others that help to reduce traffic in the city and encourage people to take public transportation.

“I’m not opposed to any ideas that would help to decrease congestion, but I’m always concerned that if we don’t incentivize things, we just tack on more costs to people,” Lee said.

Dan McMenamin, Bay City News

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  • Adrienne Kristine

    Charging riders more money to use Muni defeats the purpose of having daily quality service. If it’s a special event, Muni will be crowded no matter how much the rider pays. Unless there will be more buses/streetcars used to carry riders, the surcharge is useless, IMHO.

    • JayWantsACat

      I took the proposal to mean that they’re not adding more to the fares for Muni riders during events (at least for the proposal. It may change if its implemented, of course). Its a surcharge that’s added to the tickets to the events themselves. So, every attendee will be paying an extra $1-3 regardless of whether they actually ride Muni.

    • Adrienne Kristine

      I reread the article and you’re right. However, paying more for the event is not going to help Muni put more buses into service and reduce the number of riders on the existing buses. I hope whatever they do will work.

  • Adrienne Kristine

    Charging riders more money to use Muni defeats the purpose of having daily quality service. If it’s a special event, Muni will be crowded no matter how much the rider pays. Unless there will be more buses/streetcars used to carry riders, the surcharge is useless, IMHO.

    • JayWantsACat

      I took the proposal to mean that they’re not adding more to the fares for Muni riders during events (at least for the proposal. It may change if its implemented, of course). Its a surcharge that’s added to the tickets to the events themselves. So, every attendee will be paying an extra $1-3 regardless of whether they actually ride Muni.

    • Adrienne Kristine

      I reread the article and you’re right. However, paying more for the event is not going to help Muni put more buses into service and reduce the number of riders on the existing buses. I hope whatever they do will work.

  • sfsoma

    More money to the MTA is like flushing money down the toilet. Completely dysfunctional agency.

  • sfsoma

    More money to the MTA is like flushing money down the toilet. Completely dysfunctional agency.

  • 2of3jays

    I support the surcharge AND added vehicles to service the transport needs to get people out of cars and onto FUNCTIONING mass transit. Function and quantity are essential.

    • Bob Anderson

      As a person who regularly uses and depends on Muni it never ceases to amaze me that they would throw more money at such a dysfunctional broken system. Promises, promises! “It will get better if we just give more money out of the pockets of the public.” Ballderdash! The whole system needs to be scraped along with the MTA and half the board of supervisors. I was at a meeting for mid market last week that David Chiu was chairing along with Scott Wiener. A comment came up about congestion in an area of Polk street. Mr Chiu’s comment went something like “well let’s think out of the box and double the fine for a driver who stops or parks illegally.” Stiffing a fellow SF citizen with a double fine because they are trying to live their day to day life is outside the box! Trouble in paradise, pathetic. With that kind of concern for the common SF citizen evident by our leaders don’t expect much but the same old crap. Throw money at a problem and to hell with the poor guy/gal trying to get by in a city that has “NO” concern for him/her. The city wants from its residents but doesn’t give much back.

  • 2of3jays

    I support the surcharge AND added vehicles to service the transport needs to get people out of cars and onto FUNCTIONING mass transit. Function and quantity are essential.

    • Bob Anderson

      As a person who regularly uses and depends on Muni it never ceases to amaze me that they would throw more money at such a dysfunctional broken system. Promises, promises! “It will get better if we just give more money out of the pockets of the public.” Ballderdash! The whole system needs to be scraped along with the MTA and half the board of supervisors. I was at a meeting for mid market last week that David Chiu was chairing along with Scott Wiener. A comment came up about congestion in an area of Polk street. Mr Chiu’s comment went something like “well let’s think out of the box and double the fine for a driver who stops or parks illegally.” Stiffing a fellow SF citizen with a double fine because they are trying to live their day to day life is outside the box! Trouble in paradise, pathetic. With that kind of concern for the common SF citizen evident by our leaders don’t expect much but the same old crap. Throw money at a problem and to hell with the poor guy/gal trying to get by in a city that has “NO” concern for him/her. The city wants from its residents but doesn’t give much back.

  • Nichole

    No. Why do consumers have to fix defunct Muni. Let the administrators fix it. The money residents must spend on transportation and parking in San Francisco is getting to be outrageously excessive.

  • Nichole

    No. Why do consumers have to fix defunct Muni. Let the administrators fix it. The money residents must spend on transportation and parking in San Francisco is getting to be outrageously excessive.

  • This sounds like the congestion parking theory run amok. They got away with charging more for parking during “events”. Next will want to charge more for Muni riders during events. The just raised the fast pass fairs. Here is a better idea. Throw the MTA Board out and reset the policies.

  • This sounds like the congestion parking theory run amok. They got away with charging more for parking during “events”. Next will want to charge more for Muni riders during events. The just raised the fast pass fairs. Here is a better idea. Throw the MTA Board out and reset the policies.