Friday, March 19, 2004
Transit strike blogs
Here's a snippet from TC Metro:
Strike Day 13
Drivers'/Mechanics' Cumulative Loss $6,552,000 (wages)
Riders' Cumulative Loss $6,581,250 (75,000 riders' parking and gas less bus fare)
Metro Transit Approximate Cumulative Gain $3,900,000 (per own statements)
Yesterday was truly a sad one for our state. Our governor proclaimed "As governor, you have responsibility to solve large problems. Bottom line: I don't want to lose the Twins or the Vikings on my watch." He should have added "Our mass transit infrastructure, also a large problem costing the community $1,000,000 per day, is simply less important than helping two of the wealthiest people in the world, and important contributors to our party, add financial value to their entertainment assets so they can sell them for maybe twice what they paid." [TC Metro]
The latest news is that a couple of Minnesota state legislators are going to introduce a bill that would increase funding for the MTA by $10 million. The idea is that a well-funded MTA will be able to afford to pay their workers, and that this would put an end to the strike. My humble suggestion: put a rider on the bill that prohibits the MTA from using that money (or any money) to give out alternative transit grants.
For news of the strike, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune has set up an index of their coverage here. I think the coverage is slanted against the strikers (see today's article, Metro buses stay quiet, but people speaking up), but it's the only mainstream source delivering regular news. The TwinCities IMC is a good place to go for balance.