Occupation: Teacher/Business Owner
URL for website: Http://www.deanmichaelclark.com
Neighborhood You Live In: Hayes Valley
Date Questionnaire Returned: August 29, 2010
1. How often do you rely on Muni to get you around town? If not, what do you use instead? What would make it easier for you to choose Muni over other forms of transportation?
I use Muni about 25 percent of the time. If the availability and safety were not such an issue, I would consider using Muni more than I do. Most of the times I have used Muni, the drivers have been other than nice, and non supportive when an issue arises. I would consider using Muni more if I felt much safer using the bus, and the experience would be a clean bus and safe ride. Though I have my own concerns and experiences with Muni, Many people have told me that Muni is doing a good job and they rely on it more than I do.
2. What are the primary concerns of Muni’s owners (aka riders) about transportation and Muni in your District?
I believe the primary concerns include reliability, cut backs (lack of buses), and security. We all need to work with Muni during these difficult times of restructuring; however we all need to be able to get to work! I think one of the other concerns of Muni drivers is where is the money going?
3. As a Supervisor, you will serve on the Board of the San Francisco County
Transportation Authority. What is the role of the SFCTA, and what would you set as priorities for the agency in the next 4 years?
The SFCTA should continue to work on making the city friendlier to bikes by adding additional safety bike lanes. The main focus should be for improving our streets and sidewalks to make them better for pedestrians and bicyclists.
4. Difficult decisions often have to be made regarding transportation in San Francisco. Sometimes a well-researched project may have loud, angry opponents, or a popular project may not be the best for City residents and for San Francisco’s transportation infrastructure.
How would you make a decision under these kinds of circumstances?
(Feel free to cite a similar situation from your past experience as an example – it doesn’t have to be transit related)
While working on solutions, I believe we should find middle ground for everyone involved. If a project has loud, angry opponents I would listen to what they have to say and consider their input in the decision process. I think everyone should have a say in what goes on in San Francisco and District 6.
5. What is the Fix Muni Now charter amendment? Do you support it? (Y/N) Why or why not?
I am in favor (yes) to the Fix Muni Now Amendment. We need a functioning system with Muni, people need to get to work and access public transportation in San Francisco. The quality of life of many people in San Francisco is being affected by the Muni system and we need to fix it now. However this will not be the cure all but a start to fix our Muni system.
6. One (of many) causes for Muni’s perennial budget woes was the illegal seizure of state gas tax money by Governor Schwarzenegger and the Legislature. This has left a large hole in Muni’s income (as well as every transit agency in CA).
How would you make up this gap in Muni revenue? Would you support
– a local funding source or sources (fees, taxes, or other type of revenue) to avoid future problems caused by the state?
– would you achieve savings through cuts to Muni’s budget, fare increases, etc.
– or, do you have other ideas on how to get Muni out of its annual financial woes?
(You can choose more than one option, but just explain it clearly)
I support the idea of congestion priced traffic in San Francisco. We have a lot of drivers from outside San Francisco and tourists who drive on our streets and cause a lot of congestion with our traffic. I believe this would help Muni because many would decide to take alternative modes of transportation instead of driving because of cost factors.
I am concerned of the thought of increasing fares because we donâ€™t want to discourage ridership. Plus our elderly and many others are on fixed incomes and it could be financially impossible for some to get to the doctor, and could have an impact on ones quality of life issues here in San Francisco.
7. Finally, tell us a story about a funny or unique experience you’ve had on Muni.
I was on the 30 Stockton bus from the little Italy area going downtown to work. I was late to get to work and we stopped at every stop on the way. I was amazes at the number of people who would rush on the bus through the back door and push and shove to get on, with no regard for public safety. I never took the Stockton bus again.