Mayor: SFMTA Board Appointments Likely Coming This Week

IMG_2188.jpgMayor Newsom speaks at a press conference near One Rincon Hill today. Photo: Michael Rhodes
The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency Board has been down by two directors since May 1, but according to Mayor Newsom, his choice for the two replacement appointments should come in the next day or two.

One of the two spots has already been filled, the Mayor said today, but he's still working on convincing a second candidate to accept the position.

"We have someone I'm trying to convince," he said. "That's my challenge. I have clarity. They're just not convinced." The first appointment is "100 percent" on board, the Mayor said, but he wouldn't reveal any names.

The Mayor acknowledged that there's a hurry to appoint two new directors. In fact, last week, the SFMTA Board didn't have enough members to convene a meeting, since two of its five remaining directors couldn't make it. The board was supposed to discuss recent audits of the agency's work orders, financial statements, and performance, and possible revenue-generating ballot measures.

Newsom didn't exactly oversell his choices, saying instead that Muni's current financial problems will overshadow any board selections in the near term.

"I don't think in this town anyone's excited about anything associated with the MTA," he said. "I don't know that they'll ever be excited until the system's operating at [voter-mandated] 85 percent on-time performance, and we work through the macroeconomic crunch that has been the burden to the system, to the tune of $220 million of state cuts."

Once Newsom makes his appointments, they'll go before the Board of Supervisors for confirmation.