Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Here is how to do it !

The Bus Riders Union of Austin, Texas was successful in stopping the local bus company, Capital Metropolitan Transit Authority, from increasing all bus fare rates across the board in September 2007. All fare rates were slated to double, except for Special Transit Services, which caters to disabled people, which would have quadrupled. In the weeks leading up to the budget setting meeting, BRU members had appealed to bus riders through radio interviews, newspaper coverage, and even distributing printed material on buses. Members had also lobbied city council members who also sat on Capital Metro's board and key committees. At the September 17th board meeting that discussed the budget one week before the budget was formally adopted, members of the Bus Riders Union, PODER (People Organized in Defense of Earth and Her Resources), ADAPT of Texas (a grassroots disability rights group), and other citizens convincingly argued against the proposed fare increases. With the help of ample media coverage, the public outcry proved large enough to stop the bus rate increases.

Links:
Bus Riders Union of Austin, Texas - http://www.busatx.org/
PODER - http://www.poder-texas.org/
ADAPT of Texas - http://www.adaptoftexas.org/
Capital Metropolitan Transit Authority - http://www.capmetro.org/

Monday, January 28, 2008

Transit - An Excellent Investment

from New York Public Transit Association

Transit providers are a key contributor to New York’s financial health, with 70 percent of all mass transit trips taking residents to and from work. Public funding for transit has a significant effect on New York’s economy, with operating aid providing an economic multiplier of 3.2 for every dollar invested and transit capital projects providing an economic multiplier of 3.0 for every dollar invested.

More support for NYC Free Transit Proposal...

From Ellis Henican of Newsday


...Bloomberg could embrace the approach laid out in a new report:
"Balancing Free Transit and congestion Pricing in New York City." You read that right - FREE transit."...


other coverage...

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Another Website for Free Transit...



Almost a year ago, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said:
"From a public policy point of view you really should have all of your mass transit free..." -- weekly radio show, March 9, 2007
As 2008 rolls out, this could be our number one resolution.


Friday, January 25, 2008

NYC Free Transit proposal drawing a crowd !

The latest... from NY1.com

..."The amazing thing is, is that the whole transportation system in this city will work better for the vast majority of New Yorkers if the buses and subways are made free, financed by a steep but fair and appropriate price to drive into the congested heart of New York City," said Charles Komanoff, author of this new congestion pricing idea...


To follow the progress of the NYC Free Transit campaign - save this link

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Austin, TX BRU defeats fare increase.

The Bus Riders Union of Austin, Texas successfully defeated plans by Capital Metro to double transit fares. Take action. Join, or start, your own local transit/bus riders' union. See list at right under "Take Action" for a list of ones we know about. To get on the list: email info@freepublictransit.org.
Photo from Daily Texan Online.

The best fiscal stimulus:

Free public transit is the best fiscal stimulus. Tax cuts/rebates have a multiplier of 0.7, unemployment benefits are 1.7, whereas public transit investment has been estimated to have multiplier of 9.0.

Free public transit as a stimulus package would:
  • grease the wheels of commerce
  • have the effect of a minimum wage increase
  • reduce the need for expensive oil wars

.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Free Transit for Seniors in Illinois !

Eric Zorn of the Chicago Tribune who advocates free transit for the CTA on his blog reports that Illinois may... correction will... make public transit free for seniors.


The governor would like to do even more: according to CBS2Chicago.com:

Ideally, Gov. Rod Blagojevich says, everyone should be able to ride public transportation for free.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Free transit saves money...

New York Daily News Guest Editorial

To tame traffic, make subways & buses free - yes, free
By TED KHEEL
Thursday, January 10th 2008, 4:00 AM

...With more people taking advantage of free transit, traffic would fall by a quarter in Manhattan's most congested area, the Central Business District, and by nearly a tenth citywide. New Yorkers would save a staggering $4 billion in recovered productivity (time that would otherwise have been spent languishing in traffic) and another $2 billion in savings associated with reduced pollution, fewer auto crashes and lower insurance costs....

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

N Y Times pushes the BIG LIE

From the NYTimes editorial [The One Environmental Issue Jan 1 2008]

....One result is that even the candidates who urge comprehensive change have not been pressed on important questions of cost: How do they intend to pay for all the new efficiencies and technologies that will be necessary? And what kind of sacrifices will they be asking of people who almost certainly will have to pay more for their electric bills and their greener cars?...

Ostensibly an argument for addressing global warming, the Times editorial is a re-iteration of the Big Lie of their carbon/auto puppeteers. How will we pay? How will we pay? What an insult to our intelligence. We are currently paying very dearly by allowing the carbon/auto industry to pollute essentially for free. But that is evidently the "free" market and stopping this trillion-dollar subsidy is considered a "cost" that we who want to stop the subsidy have to justify. Pathetic.