And that's how San Francisco's brief flirtation with Sunday Parking meter enforcement ends, folks, not with a bang, but with a whimper.
It was all the way back in February, 2012 when the SFMTA, looking down the barrel of a then $20 million shortfall, proposed enforcing parking meters from noon-6 PM on Sundays. And by January, 2013, that enforcement was on, generating $3,143,000 in revenue in 2013's fiscal year, and $1,869,000 in the first four months of fiscal year 2014 (the Ex has an even higher number, saying it generated an annual $11 million).
However, that revenue—and the reported benefits it's brought local businesses, were nothing compared to the "constant complaints" Mayor Ed Lee says his office has received since enforcement began. (Constant complaints, we should note, that are apparently not trackable by any public records. Sounds legit!)
Though SFMTA chief Ed Reiskin briefly appeared ready to challenge the mayor on this, by mid-April it was game over for Sunday metered parking. As of July 1, the SFMTA board agreed, no SF city parking meters (Port of San Francisco meters are a whole other thing) will need to be fed on Sunday, but, oh yeah, cash adult fares for Muni trains and buses will go up to $2.25.
Perhaps understandably, transit advocates were pissed, and filed an appeal with the San Francisco Board of Supervisors saying that the end of the meter enforcement should require a full program environmental review. An appeal that was rejected by the Supes Tuesday, even as they agreed that the way it all came down—that is, Mayoral decree—was kind of bullshit.
At Tuesday's Supes meeting, reports the SFBG, it was Supervisor David Campos who had the harshest words, saying "Let’s be clear: The reason why the SFMTA budget included an item that did not provide for funding from Sunday meters is because the mayor wanted it that way. We have a budget system that is essentially run by decisions made in the Mayor’s Office."
The Mayor's office's motive, according to members of the SFMTA board? By dumping Sunday meters, Lee thought they'd build support for the vehicle license fee increase he'd hoped to add to the November ballot.
Yup, the same one he dumped earlier this month. Whoops.
Good luck with that shortfall, SFMTA. Looks like you're gonna need it.
Previously on SFist
By Mayor Lee's Decree, Sunday Parking Will Be Free
The Mayor vs. Muni: The Fight Over Sunday Meters
What The Hell Is Going On With Free Sunday Parking Meters?
Ed Lee Wants To End Sunday Parking Meter Fees
Reminder: Starting Sunday, SF Parking No Longer Free
Parking Meter Hours Could Get Extended to Evenings, Sundays