Today’s Headlines

  • Board Delays Vote on One Oak (SFExaminer)
  • Are ‘Free’ Rides Costing BART? (SFChron)
  • Bay Area Residents Buy Homes Out of Town (SFGate)
  • Shorter Apt Building Planned for Oakland Parking Lot (Socketsite)
  • New Muni Uniforms (SFExaminer, SFBay)
  • Mapping 24-hours of Public Transit (Curbed)
  • People Behaving Badly or Bad Design on Octavia? (Kron4)
  • More on Connecting Caltrain to Transbay (BizTimes)
  • Mission Cultural Center Celebrates (Hoodline)
  • Marin Seeks to Move Novato Narrows Bottleneck (MarinIJ)
  • Commentary: SF NIMBYs Hurt US Economy (NYTimes)

Get state headlines at Streetsblog CA, national headlines at Streetsblog USA

  • david vartanoff

    Of course BART employees get free passes as they should. This is traditional in US businesses be they employee discounts in retail, employee meals in restaurants or similar fringe benefits. Cutting back on these perks amounts to a wage cut for the workers involved.

  • and their families?

  • Sean

    If MTC gives any money to Marin to widening a freeway a year after building a commuter rail system…SB1 money for a damn freeway? RM3 money for a project that will induce more driving? Just wow.

  • p_chazz

    I worked for the IRS and I never got a discount on my federal taxes.

  • GregKamin

    When I worked for an airline, we never got free travel.

    We paid 10% of full fare for a standby flight, or 25% of full fare for a guaranteed seat.

    It was free travel to get to work, of course, which was sometimes thousands of miles away. Sometimes had to sit in the jump seat though.

  • mx

    I’m perfectly fine with free travel for BART employees, even families and retirees. Free BART travel for thousands of police officers, on the other hand, hasn’t done a damn thing to reduce crime and is basically just official corruption. Limit that to on-duty officers only.

  • david vartanoff

    why not? As Pres. Saltzman notes, these are contractual perks. Changes are subject to negotiations. Having your family members travel for free increases your discretionary income meaning you might settle for a slightly lower base wage.
    @ GregKamin 75 to 90 % discount is still way cheaper than list.

  • Is it traditional for transit workers families to get free rides?
    Not “can I make a hypothetical case to justify anything once it’s already in a contract?”.

  • Andy Chow

    But airline crew members get to travel (and spend time in the city during layover before the next shift) while getting paid. Most people who don’t work in transportation don’t get this kind of advantage.

  • Andy Chow

    Most transit properties offer free transit rides to employees and family as a fringe benefit. It is a very low cost benefit since it doesn’t require the employer to purchase something for it (compared to say, health plan). The marginal cost to the employer is low.

    The same case is true for free meals for restaurant workers. The marginal cost for free meals is low since restaurants buy a lot of food and throw away a lot of food. Restaurants feed them at non busy times so they’re not taking space for paying customers. If the restaurants want to provide transit as a benefit, they’ll have to purchase passes/tickets at full price available from the transit agency, which is no different than offering health plans.

  • As hard as it may be for most people to believe, sometimes a question is just a(n honest) question.

    Considering transit tickets don’t pay all expenses of running the transit system, it’s probably even less cost to the employer than free food to a restaurant worker.

  • Jeffrey Baker

    Why isn’t BART just free for everybody, off-peak?