Transit and the Environment
To the Editor:
We commend the Examiner for covering the Metropolitan Transportation Commission's (MTC) delay in adopting environmental justice principles to guide Bay Area transportation spending (April 12, 2006). Community groupscontinue demanding that the two shelved principles also be adopted.
Mayor Gavin Newsom should note Chair Jon Rubin's inexcusable delay in fully supporting the principles and consider how well his appointee is serving all San Franciscans-- including low-income people and communities of color who are being consistently short-changed by the MTC.
Contrary to Rubin's claims that the principles would expose the MTC to litigation, they could actually help avoid the type of discrimination lawsuits it is currently facing.
Rubin should be turning the wheels in favor of the communities he was appointed to represent, not derailing the MTC's own Minority Citizens Advisory Council's hard work for environmental justice.
See related Action Alert
April 13, 2006
RESPONSE TO LETTER
Transit board appointee
Juliet Ellis of Urban Habitat wrote to complain about Metropolitan Transportation Commission's delay in endorsing environmental justice guidelines, and the role of MTC President Jon Rubin, the appointee of the mayor of San Francisco.
Under current law, the appointee of the mayor serves on the MTC board for a four-year term and cannot be removed by the mayor. Mr. Rubin was appointed by Mayor Willie Brown, and Mayor Newsom has no control over his activities and regrettably little or no communication with him.
Mr. Rubin's term ends next February, at which time Mayor Newsom can appoint his own representative to look after San Francisco's interests.
James W. Haas