Posted by Parking: BARTD vs. Integrity , a resident of Livermore, on Mar 1, 2013 at 9:39 am
When they proposed the new electric train, they promised that there would be ample parking, and that it would be free.
Now, not only are they charging for something that was to be included, as part of the package that went to the voters, BARTD sold off the ground level parking at Dublin to a developer, and it is now being built on.
They also promised, and budgeted for the train to go to Livermore. (They claimed Pleasanton did not need as much parking because it was NOT the End of the Line.)
They took that money, taxes, grants, and federal, but never built the track. And recently they let a Lexus Lane be constructed in the right of way needed to build to Livermore.
Posted by Same People who promised a seat for every rider, a resident of Livermore, on Mar 1, 2013 at 9:51 am
BART cars originally had no straps or handrails, because they claimed never be needed.
They thought thy would never have a fire either, so the interiors were very flammable plastics.
Until they had the tragic 1979 electrical TransBay tunnel fire that incinerated four BART cars, destroyed others, killed an Oakland firefigher, and injured others.
After that, the Oakland Fire Chief declared the Cars in the tunnel unsafe, and shut the Tunnel down for months, until BART finally agreed to fix the cars, and correct some fire protection systems that were installed without approvals, and would not work..
In January 1979, an electrical fire occurred on a train as it was passing through the tube. One firefighter (Lt. William Elliott, 50, of the Oakland Fire Department) was killed in the effort to extinguish the blaze.
Posted by BARTD's Historical Attitude, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Mar 1, 2013 at 9:59 am
The January 17, 1979 fire completely destroyed four cars, and the rest were suspected of structural heat damage and removed from service.
It did illustrate that the smoke evacuation system was woefully inadequate, and the interiors of the cars were plastic that burned fast and gave off copious toxic smoke.
Fire authorities had known about the plastic and many building and exiting fire concerns, but BARTD refused to address their issues. They said BART answered only to the California PUC, (who was totally not up to the task of regulation.)
After that Fire, Oakland Fire Chief Wm Moore declared the tube and BART a "fire hazard" and prohibited running trains under the Bay.
At first, BART claimed he did not have the authority, but the PUC would not override him, so the under bay tube was out of service for months.
Under this pressure, BART eventually agreed to a long program to replace the interiors of the cars- over several years- and to fix many fire related features that never worked before such as the ventilation, and fire standpipes and pumps that were designed wrong.
Posted by Anti-Union, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Mar 1, 2013 at 3:25 pm
Of course rates HAVE to systematically increase every two years.....quietly, they are given one of the most excessive public employee pension programs !!! No other options. That's the other half of out-of-control public pensions ! ! ! It must be fought and controlled...DO something !
Posted by local, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Mar 1, 2013 at 5:11 pm
"Inflation" = "Higher wages and benefits, including pensions"
On pension cost, we the taxpayers pay 100% of the employee's share of the pension cost. Plus the district allows employees to purchase 'air time' on their pension system, with the taxpayer holding the bag on the actual costs when the pension plan does not meet the unattainable expected returns. BART employees have free use of the system for themselves, their family, while employed or after retirement.
The BART employee contracts expire on June 30, 2013 (this year). Expect a threat of a strike, the management giving in, and then another increase of rates.
Posted by Beth, a member of the Walnut Grove Elementary School community, on Mar 3, 2013 at 9:22 pm
Workers, all workers, are entitled to a fair wage and a secure retirement. If you are so angry that public employees have negotiated to retire with a modicum of security, maybe instead you should look to your CEO employer, who earns 300 times what you do, and ask for a fair wage and a decent benefit package. Web Link
Posted by Cleo, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Mar 3, 2013 at 11:12 pm
I feel badly for folks who were either too stupid or too cowardly to organize and form a union during their working lives. But they should be expected to take on some responsibility for their failure to act. When they boo-hoo about present day unions, all it is is whining by the stupid and cowardly. You're angry about public worker pensions? What kind of retirement do you think the CEO gets? Oh well, might as well keep deflecting your own frustrations toward those who have had the intelligence and bravery to stand solidary against owner exploitation of labor.
Posted by Pensions were never the problem, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Mar 4, 2013 at 9:06 am
The problem is that government employers got a free ride when times were good.
When interest rates were very high, pension funds were invested so well that governments and Agencies, like BART, were allowed to reduce or stop paying toward employee's pensions, because of the interest or return on the investments.
The investments did so well that employers did not have to pay or charge the employees for years; and CalPers was worried that the State of Ca would "borrow" their money.
But when interest rates came down, pension funds just burned away their funds, and did not promptly ask employers to pay, or to pay enough. Eventually that caught up to them, and employers not only have to pay, they need to make up for some of the prior free ride. CalPERS and the teachers pensions are similar.
Yes, the employers need to pay more. But it is interesting to see news articles that say CalPERS is now getting a much better rate of return on investments, so perhaps there's hope that can help offset the years of underpayments.
If you ask the employees to pay more, it really just costs more in the long run because that money comes out of their salaries, which the employer pays,and is taxed, too. If the employer pays, it is pre tax. When you consider taking a job, that's an important comparison.
Employees did not cause the recession, and cutting the pensions that they are entitled to, based on years of service, will not solve today's problems.
Posted by local, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Mar 4, 2013 at 9:15 am
Looks like the union shills are on this board.
I have no problem with unions in the private sector although I think some of them price themselves out of the market and then they do a disservice to their members. The difference between a private company union and the public sector unions is the pubic sector unions actually control the 'business'. Cities will not shut down or be outsourced, same with transportation systems like BART. They will either force higher prices (which in the public sector would mean a loss of business to your competitor), or the public will have less services. The districts have a monopoly. Unions work when there is no monopoly. When there is a monopoly, the unions are are no different than the mob with their extortion.
As for a CEO making millions of dollars, while it is excessive in many places, it has nothing to do with the discussions here. We are talking about a monopoly here, not the free enterprise. If a company pays their CEO an outrageous salary, I can choose not to do business with that company if it bothers me, or not buy stock in that company. Their competitor can use profits to improve their products which give them a leg-up over the company giving out high salaries. In the public, we have none of this going for us.
Posted by You may be missing something here, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Mar 4, 2013 at 9:22 am
Hey, One Hung Low:
"Another case of the unions, liberals, illegal aliens troika vacuuming out your wallet."
But BART actually made millions in profits this year.
Even after paying the employees a decent wage and benefits.
I for one do not think I want to ride an electric train run by people who can't get a better paying job...
SO it is the BART managers who just want to take MORE of your money, and charge for parking. One year they proposed to temporarily reduced fares as a way to give back to the riders who have no choice as to what they pay, but not this time.
(More people might ride the buses to BART, if they did not depart too soon for riders to board.)
And what does this have to do with E. T. and illegal aliens?