tv Government Access Programming SFGTV May 27, 2018 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT
of the sunshine ordinance, which are violations of either the brown act or california public records act. a dozen of those are the library either trying to keep me from getting public records to substantiate the phrases. the previous speakers -- i presented statistics and documents and they say, it's a wonderful relationship. i will tell you what's happened in the library. i've been going for 10 years now and the friends never show up at that meeting anymore. they used to show up and show of those false numbers saying, we're giving $700,000, $800,000, hiding that the money was coming from other people and they're taking credit for it. they never show numbers and they have access to all the numbers. one of the things that is hard to to try to get the library to take any responsibility for the financial arrangement. they're supposed to look out for the benefit of the library and yet they know absolutely nothing about where this money goes and
how it's spent and they've stopped talking about the friends at the public library commission meetings because they can't prove me wrong. bottom line is, in all the people over here in the controller's department, etc., you know that if somebody walks up with numbers and statistics that are actually from a public source and they're confronted -- and the only response they get is, oh, we do wonderful things. and we have all this. we have all that. if they could have proved me wrong, they would have done it to shut me up years ago. and they can't because i'm right. 10% of the money they raise goes to the library. 90% of it is questionable where it goes. and by now, the friends or the library, if they could, would have shown that i'm wrong and instead what they do is actively scam the public. >> supervisor cohen: next speaker.
again, this is for items 1-3. if you would like to comment on any of the budgets for the -- regarding the airport, the port, the library, m.t.a., environment, building inspections or public utilities commission, now is the time. >> thank you, chairman, and supervisors. i'm carol simmons, san francisco resident and former library director in the bay area. and i would like to speak in support of the library's budget request and in particular in support of the implementation of rfid technology. having read the article in the paper last week, i think there's an unfounded fear of privacy violations. and so i wanted to speak to a little bit of our experience down on the peninsula in implementing rfid beginning in 2009. so i have touched base with my colleagues down there to see if there has been any concerns or any reports of privacy violations and there have not.
and as acting city librarian michael lambert said, it's because of the way that libraries implement rfid technology. they only use -- there are many types of rfid chips and labels and they're used in many industries, including retail and shipping. but the tags that are used by libraries are for inventory control only and they're used in order to increase efficiency of operations. they've only two elements on them. the bar code is through a reader and interfaces with the system. when you check an item out, the security toggle is set to off, so you can walk out of the item with what you have checked out. when it's checked back in, the reverse takes place. the security toggle is on and libraries use that to prevent theft. but i just wanted to say that rfid in libraries is industry standard and it also really increases the efficiency of the
automated handling system, which is -- allows you to check out and check in large amounts of items and have them fed more quickly through the redistribution process either into patron hands or on the shelves. one of the other things that's really important about rfid is it prevents repetitive motion injuries to staff. >> supervisor cohen: thank you. thank you. thank you. thank you. next speaker, please. >> madam chair cohen, supervisors fewer, stefani, yee, thank you for the opportunity to speak before you. i'm joseph bryant. i'm the regional vice president of sciu 10-1. we're here to speak on a particular issue that we're facing and it pertains to some of our employees within the sfmta. i think we've made all of you
aware of this issue in regards to the school crossing guards, you know, school crossing guards provide essential services to ensure that kids can get to school safely and on time and so forth. with this position, a number of these folks just faced challenges in terms of the way that their employment is structures, essentially short hours that don't allow them to reach the levels where they can benefit from pension, healthcare and so forth. so we're asking with this budget, the $1.2 billion budget within the sfmta, to consider correcting this problem of our school crossing guards to allow them to live and prosper in the city and county of san francisco. sfmta is a department we've worked mutually with on many issues and been able to resolve
many of these. we also feel this is of mutual benefit to resolve the sfmta has referenced challenges in terms of retention of employees and so forth. from our perspective in regards to the workers that are dealing with it and struggling to stay on with that, but we ask through this process is we try to correct this issue. again, we feel it's mutually beneficial for the department, for the workers, that we give those an opportunity to prosper in the city and county of san francisco. thank you. >> supervisor cohen: thank you. next speaker, please. >> hello, chair and supervisors on the budget committee. i'm michael weinberg, political organizer sciu 10-1, and i'm speaking to you about the crossing guards as well. we've been to you before. we've been attempting to raise the issue with the mta and
they've been unable to address any of the issues. so we're asking you to address the issues so that not only these workers can be treated appropriately, but that the service is provided in a safe and fair manner. we know that crossing guards provide a valuable service that is very popular service in the city. the way the program is management now, it's not fair to either the taxpayers or the employees who are being mistreated and given poor opportunities to provide services and the department spends an inordinant amount of money doing constant recruitments because of the low wages and compensation and hours. and those are things that need to be addressed. got copies of the m.t.a. presentation on the crossing guard program, where they identify all of these issues and
challenges with the program and yet are refusing to address. so i have these issues here for you to take a look at. so we're asking for your assistance in giving guidance and direction to the m.t.a. to meet with us to work on addressing these issues this year, right now. thank you very much. >> supervisor cohen: thank you. next speaker, please. mr. clerk, could you grab the -- >> clerk: yes. please leave it in the box and we'll pick it up. >> hello. i'm mary midonord. i'm working as a crossing guard and i'm speaking up for them. i've been there for -- since 2014 to now. let me tell you something, it's really, really dangerous to work in that place. i work and cesar chavez and
harrison and sometimes the cars don't pay attention and the kids have to run away the other way on the street and it's very, very scary because sometimes we can get hit and nobody looks like anybody cares about us. and also they don't appreciate us. they just don't appreciate us. so, i don't know. >> supervisor cohen: is that it? >> yes. >> supervisor cohen: thank you. you are appreciated. >> thank you. >> hello, good morning, members of the board. i'm hector cardenos, union representative for sfmta and paramedics. the sfmta presented the difficulties for recruitment and retention for school crossing
guard program, illustrating the high turnover rate of employees performing this important work of getting children, disabled, elderly and general public across the streets of san francisco safely before and after school. we believe this is because the school crossing guard job is hardly treated as a real job by the city. currently, it's a temporary exempt job without grievance procedure. it is the lowest paid and no benefits for a job requiring putting one's self in harm on the streets of san francisco. the sfmta has refused to meet twice to adequately address the issues along with the request to review the equipment provided for the job. when asked for a review on proper care resistant rain gear, the sfmta provided the following response. "sfmta has issued 90% of the
protected rain gear and access listed in your draft proposal to the sustainable streets division. unfortunately, we cannot entertain any new proposals at this time. you are encouraged to address this during contract negotiations in 2019." please put that money in the budget, so we can negotiate to make it a proper position for the city and county. thank you. >> supervisor cohen: thank you. next speaker, please. >> hi. good morning. my name is reese isbel, regular library user. and would i like to speak to the rfid issue. and i regularly check out graphic novels. i check out a lot, actually. and along with other books that i check out. and, as you can see, you can check out a lot when you go to the library with your library card, which is great. part of what our rfid does is
allows -- as you know, when you check out a book, you have your library card. you put it under the scanner. and then you scan each one. this is for librarians as well as the public, like me. and it takes several seconds and several amounts of time. the difference with rfid is, you just put them in the block and it goes ding, ding, ding, ding, ding. you don't have to go through the separate scannings. that's very important for large amounts of borrowing. and it sounds small but it actually adds up to 12,000 to 15,000 hours or the work of six to seven full time employees annually. so that's quite a big deal. it also assists them and our
community members using the self-serve with issues with the continual use of this, as well as when you check out an audio visual or a cd, the rfid will tell you if it's already in the case or not. you don't have to open it and then close it to check. so there's a number of benefits with rfid. and i would encourage you to support it. thank you. >> supervisor cohen: thank you. next speaker. >> good morning, supervisors. i'm karen strauss. i'm the past chief of the main library at san francisco public library and i'm here in support of the proposal for implementing rfid at the library from the perspective of protecting our investment and our collections over the more than 125 years of the existence of the san
francisco public library tens and hundreds of millions of dollars has been provided to build up a glorious collection of materials and books and video and other formats and one of the things that rfid does in addition to the benefits you've heard about, it provides much better access to the collection for staff and patrons alike in terms of being able to find things. and one of the difficulties of a system as ours is so large and spread around so many locations in our city is that things -- things are not always exactly where we think they are at any given time for a host of very legitimate reasons. and so rfid, in addition to all these other benefits you've heard about, is inventory control, which is no small issue when we talk about the $10 million every year that the library devotes to enhancing and
improving the collection for all of san franciscans. thank you. >> supervisor cohen: thank you. next speaker. >> madam chair and members. my name is bob finebaum. i'm chair of save muni. and i suspect, madam chair, that you will hold a comment period after the m.t.a. budget as well, is that correct? >> supervisor cohen: no, that's not correct. now is your time to talk about the m.t.a. budget. thank you. >> thank you. two things. first of all, we've submitted a statement. i will submit a written copy for you today, which should be in your packet, where we're asking you to reject the m.t.a. budget and send it back for further work. today you will hear a report from the budget analyst on every department other than the m.t.a. i understand the m.t.a. decision you have to make is to vote for
it or to reject it. but that does not excuse the fact that you need information that can appropriate i will be given by a budget analysis. we call upon you to not take action on the m.t.a. budget today but to ask the budget analyst to do a thorough analysis, focusing specifically on the additional personnel, additional budget, that is being asked for by the m.t.a. and whether those services cannot be provided within the existing budget as it is few constituted. so we think that the m.t.a. budget should be rejected. we think it needs more work. and we think that the process by which it was adopted at the m.t.a. board is very flawed and we would commend to you to use
your extraordinary powers to reject the budget and i would like to give the clerk a copy of our statement. >> supervisor cohen: please. you can put it in the box here and we'll collect it and make sure it's reflected in the file. is there another speaker? >> good morning. i'm gregory williams. i came in here yesterday. and i indicated your unprofessionalism as councilmembers and you will be terminated. now i have a question. it is in regards to the indications that are being discussed now. is it in general or is it one specific category we're discussing at this time? >> supervisor cohen: it's public comment at this time. >> okay. again, what i identify on your paperwork, which is proposed that it must be reviewed because there is so much excessive
financial means that is being futilely spent and it goes to the question where we don't see any change, where the actual financial stability to the specific category doesn't provide any change. so where is the funding going? and whom, one of you, are allowing this excessive funding? i'm the beneficiary. i own this wealth. what are you doing with the financial means -- education, libraries, law enforcement? what else? where is the funding going? because we shouldn't be continuing over and over talking about the same concept in the proposals. and when we got to overreview the proposals because some of them don't make sense. you are utilizing futile spending form things that we don't see betterment or advancements. so it's important that we
understand what we intend to do. i will be sitting in that chair i am the chair. so hopefully before the day is over, constituents will rise and escort you out of this building. >> good morning, supervisors. i'm peter warfield, executive director of library users association and we strongly oppose and join with others in opposing if i funding whatsoever for rfid. when the library says there's no risk to patron privacy, that's them saying it. and conditionally, they're basically saying no risk to access to the database because
without that, you can't tell what the title is. the first issue is, there's authorized access very much available from one of the prime people that people are concerned about with privacy and that is the government. the government with subpoenas or through the patriot act can get at that library database with no problem whatsoever. but it isn't even required to have access to the database to provide privacy threats. who said it's perfectly safe? the library. the aclu and electronic frontier foundation have centers will to luis herrera. i've provided copies of those in which they say, oppose and continue to oppose rfid use in libraries because of its privacy and free speech concerns. also an early study, which i've also provided the supervisors
said, current conventional wisdom suggests that privacy risks negligible unless there is access to library databases. we show that's not the case. there are books about this problem. spy chips, how major corporations and government plan to track your every move with rfid. it's a serious privacy threat. it has many other functional problems, expenses. you can get fines and fees for years with the cost of this. >> good morning, supervisors. my name is bill calledman, first floor manager at the main library and sciu 10-21, having worked in two other libraries that utilize rfid, i can tell
that you it covers greatly increased efficiency. it frees staff from the routine process of checking in and out materials, affording them to do what they're there for -- serve the public. despite what other commenters continue to report there, is no increas increased privacy exposure. of i've talked to berkeley public library and contra costa library who are in position to know about privacy concerns and they state there has been no concerns of patron privacy in regards to rfid. we're in a position to replace the technology we have in the library that we already have regardless if we implement rfid. the example i would give you. if you had an 8 track player in your car and it broke down, you probably with not replace it
with an 8 track player. you would upgrade your technology, which is exactly what we're doing with this project. i appreciate your time. >> supervisor cohen: any other members of the public that would like to comment on 1-3 or the department budgets, airport, library, mta, inspections or puc. seeing none -- no, no. you have made your public comment. public comment is closed. all right. public comment is closed for items 1-3, however these items will remain open. now i would like to call items 5 and 6 together, so we can hear that. we're going to hear from m.t.a. >> item 5 is a transfer up to $4 million to the general fund for overpayment and duplicate payments to the city for parking
and transit violations between january 1, 1994, june 30, 2016. item 6 is a resolution authorizing substitution of a letter of credit offered by sumitomo mitsui acting through its new york branch not to exceed $100 million to support the municipal transportation agency commercial paper program. >> supervisor cohen: last week the issue of crossing guards was raised by supervisor sheehy, who is out today. i don't know if there's an appetite on this body to hear your update. so maybe you can make it brief. the other thing i want to remind you is that the issue of taxi medallion strategies was also raised and perhaps you can weave some information into your
presentation. but the rest i give the floor to you. thank you. >> thank you, madam chair, members of the committee. ed briskin, director of transportation. with regard to the budget items, i appreciate the feedback that we got from you last week. i think it was four of the five of you, including supervisor sheehy, that had indicated some interest in us doing more with regard to crossing guards. to remind you of the context, large part of our capital budget is directed towards investing in physical changes in our streets to make them safer. a lot of them are targeted on the high injury network on the city and a lot of those school locations and other areas where we have vulnerable populations. we, moreover, do extra work at some of the areas in the yellow crosswalks that we do at schools, lower speed limits. we have an engineering program where we have an engineer dedicated to working with schools to put further
improvements in play and we recently assumed management of the safe routes to school program. so we are, as you, very focused on assuring performance and safe passage to and from schools and other such facilities. the crossing guards are really one part of that. and certainly an important part of that. as i indicated to you last week, we are proposing to increase from 195 to 215 crossing guards. and that would allow us to fulfill all of the outstanding requests that we have for crossing guards. and changes that we have made recently to how we recruit crossing guards means it has brought us to the point where we're at the highest staffing levels, i believe, that we've ever had. nevertheless, i did hear from many of you last week that you would like to see us go beyond that. so what i sent to you yesterday
is a proposal for the further increase at the level of $150,000 that would allow us to do a menu of things. it could be up to 10 additional crossing guards. it could be for other services that support our safe routes to school and safe routes to seniors program. and that was really -- it was the spirit of some of what i heard from you last week, particularly supervisor sheehy's comments, in that he would like us to have funds available to fulfill any additional requests for crossing guards, if needed, but not to lock up those funds such that they could not otherwise be used. so this proposal, which i have confirmed support for from my board chair and vice chair, would give us the flexibility to either add more crossing guards, if there are more requests than we currently have, that it would make sense for us to fulfill, or to flex those funds for other
school-supported activities. that's what the add -- additional proposal with crossing guards. with the taxes and tncs, we would have an opportunity to get into that in detail at the hearing, supervisor cohen, that you called for in july. we have released a study that was commissioned last year by us to take a look at the issues that you've raised in the past and that you raised somewhat with the airport in terms of the situation with taxis relative to tncs and we're taking comment and feedback from the taxi industry. it's certainly available for public comment as well. from that, we will be making our recommendations for steps to take moving forward and we will use the hearing that out all have proposed holding as one of
the essentially public hearings for that process and a way to vet community feedback as well as to vet any recommendations that we come forward with. so those are the budget items on items 5 and 6. item 5 is the result of a state law requirement that we -- for any overpayments that we have for parking citations, that we make known those overpayments and try to seek return of those funds to those who have overpaid for whatever reason. people do apparently overpay citations. we went through the state-mandated process to do that and this is for citations from the years 2005 to 2015. and at the end of that process, there remain $4 million that state law, fortunately for the general fund, says accrues to
general city revenues. with this item, you would be accepting that and i believe the budget office has and fit -- anticipated these revenues with regard to the budget they're preparing. and item 6 is an item -- somewhat of a technical change, but the board of supervisors authorized the sfmta to establish a commercial paper program for funding, just as you have with the transportation authority. there was a line of credit associated with that commercial paper program that was set to expire. through a competitive process, we got a better deal on that line of credit. but because that line of credit was part of the approval that you provided, changing the letter of credit requires your approval and that's what's under item 6. so we would respectfully recommend your approval of items 5 and 6. i would be happy to answer any
questions about those or the budget. >> supervisor cohen: colleagues, any questions? seeing none. i have a few questions. >> supervisor fewer: i want to comment on the $150,000 flexible funds for crossing guards. i'm in disagreement with supervisor sheehy that the funds should be flexible. i think the fact is that our children go to school every day, monday through friday, and even though i understand that you are making capital improvements, i don't think it's adequate enough. in my district, we have -- we have requests for crossing guards on corridors that actually, i think, require a human being to stop the traffic. my husband was a traffic cop for nine years, a police officer for 35, but all he did was strict enforcement on a solo
motorcyclist. people do not stop at stop signs people do not yield for pedestrians. he said he is able to give tickets one after another not yielding to pedestrians. when we think about our children going to school themselves, this is crucial. and i actually think that the proposal of having crossing guards on a 20-hour workweek with benefits, makes it an opportunity also for some of our seniors to gain employment that is not only worthwhile and socially fulfilling, but also meet some of the basic requirements of them to be able to live here in san francisco. i feel like this is a small opportunity that m.t.a. can accommodate in their $1.1 billion budget. we're talking about a cost of about $2 million. and i believe that you cannot put a pricetag on the cost of a child being injured going to school and so i am pushing m.t.a. to sink into their budget
an additional $2 million to actually have those crossing guard jobs be something that is permanent. i'm hearing from crossing guards that if they call in sick, there is no one to take their place. i don't believe that upping the amount from 195 to 215 solves the problem of recruitment. i think that it's going to take something that is much more foundational to make this -- to make recruitment not so difficult and attract a more stable and realible work force without turnover and also, as i said before, supervisor yee and i are really looking at employment opportunities for seniors. a part-time job like this, i believe, is actually, could be a absolute to some homelessness, but also to food insecurity for our seniors. i urge you and the board to really look closely at this and see if you can fit that into your budget. i realize you are going into
negotiations next year with seiu, but i think that this at this time, especially when we start school in august, that we -- i want to see our crossing guards in all of our schools be fully staffed with crossing guards. we hear constant complaints also from parents about crossing streets even with their children as adults. i think because these crossing guards are very visible. they carry some authority with them and they don't cross just children. they cross everyone. they cross me when i'm crossing the street. so i'm looking to m.t.a. to actually see to it that this is in the budget. and i want to address the taxi issue. the taxi issue in your report gives some recommendations, but there is no -- there is no relief for any sort of -- the financial responsibility on the medallions. to make the medallions have more
value is not even addressing the issue that these people have taken out loans of $250,000. they come to our board meetings every tuesday. some of them have four and five children. they have lost their homes. they can't even feed their children. people are now -- they are working seven days a week. they're working all day and all night. this is the working class of san francisco. and i agree that m.t.a. had no say in the takeover of the tncs, but this has had an adverse effect on their lives and i feel like it is also very inhumane and heartless to not have a plan to address this financially. this burden, if they default on their loans, it affects their ability to ever get another loan, to get them out of another financial crisis. and so i'm asking the m.t.a. to come up with more than just a --
what was suggested in the report. i think i need something much more foundational. and until these issues are addressed, i personally cannot approve an m.t.a. budget. i know that our ability at the board and the way the charter is written gives me no option but to vote up or down the m.t.a. budget and knowing how the city depends on m.t.a. and people in my district are some of them wholly dependent on m.t.a. to get them to and from work, it pains me. but i think the two issues -- and i believe because i came before the m.t.a. board, before they even adopted a budget, to bring up these concerns, gave enough headway time and also leeway time to come up with some solid suggestions that actually attack the problem that we're dealing with. and so i also wanted to mention that i would like to see an expansion of language access, meaning that expansion of
language is available and including more languages for outreach and for surveys. and i think that when i held a hearing on language access ordinance, m.t.a., you spent very little of your budget, your $1.1 billion budget, on language access. for example, i have a russian population in my neighborhood that is dependent on public transportation and no one has asked them what their needs are in their native language. i just think that -- i understand that the m.t.a. has a huge budget and it's a huge job, but these main issues brought before the commission, i actually feel like i am not getting a remedy or solution or anything that fully addresses the foundational issues. personally, i'm unable to approve a budget that doesn't show me some real solutions to
these problems. and because i think they're really important to the livelihood of people in san francisco, it aligns with a vision zero goal. it affects every neighborhood. and it affects really the economy of people who are just trying to make a living here in san francisco. i see that we have other people on our list. supervisor stefani. >> supervisor stefani: thank you. i have a quick question about some of the fees that i noticed that were increasing as part of the budget. and some of those pertain to the on-street car share permit fee. how were the increases determined? >> thank you for the question, through the chair, supervisor s thank you , all of our cost fees that we add up, labor costs and also labor costs, for the
on-streetcar share program, for example, there's signage, there's paint for the curb, but largely, it's labor costs. so we add up all the costs and divide by the number of units that we anticipate. so for the car share program, the number of cars on the street. what we found in the last few years, is that the number of cars that were authorized under the program, the car share companies are not putting out as many as we had anticipated and some it's because of neighborhood concerns, parking loss, any other reasons. the demnominator is essentially the same. that's why in part the costs go up and generally the costs of the increases and labor costs from the citywide and m.t.a. labor agreements bring the costs up. i have met with, both, my staff
and one of the companies and found that there are some opportunities that we may have to reduce costs. there are a lot of staff time dealing with tows of car share vehicles that shouldn't have happened. so one of the things that we're looking at is how to fix the process so if that doesn't happen, we can reduce the amount of staff we need to have to manage the program, we would be able to reduce the fees, but we are committed as a principal of our budget that fees for programs like this do cover the cost of administering the program, so we're not subsidizing essentially the programs. we don't want to have to reduce muni service to enable to private car share operators to have street access. we want the program to be successful, but we want it to
cover its costs. >> supervisor stefani: thank you. >> supervisor yee: thank you, director. in regards to the $150,000 that you were talking about for the crossing guards to be flexible, just curious -- i heard that you say that it could be used for additional sites or some other usage. i guess -- i'm not too sure if the flexibility includes increasing hours to people so that they can go elsewhere -- as we sort of discussed last -- was it last week, is it an idea that's completely off the books for your commission at this point? >> so the issue of expanding hours is not what's
contemplated. what is contemplated here was creating slots for more schools or more intersections to have crossing guards. and then the flexibility is what i thought i had heard from the committee last week or at least maybe it was just from one member, such that if those weren't needed, because we have, with the additional 20, we will have filled all the known, outstanding needs that we have, that we would be able to flex those funds to other purposes consistent with getting kids to school safely. in terms of the change in hours or the structure of the crossing guard program, the city does have collective bargaining agreement in place with 10-1. the crossing guards are covered under the city's labor contract, not the m.t.a.'s. they've raised this issue outside of the bargaining process. there is language in the collective bargaining agreement
that establishes the process by which any such matter that comes up outside of the bargaining process is to be handled and we're fully committed to working through that process and engaging with seiu on a discussion about this. this didn't come up to me until fairly recently and i -- when it did, i wrote back, you know, responded in writing, saying that we're committed to exploring this with you. [please stand by]
per -- last night i was at the transportation authority community advisory committee, and one of your appointees was telling me even with the service we added is so crowded often she cannot get on, why can't we add more service. so, we have a lot of demands on the resources of agency from a lot of different areas that we serve and the budget is a reflection of our best attempt to balance the different interests and meet the most critical needs and i believe that the additional, now two increases to the proposal for crossing guards and conjunction with all of the other work we do in terms of education and engineering and enforcement around the schools is a
reasonable step forward and we remain as committed as you do to making sure that our kids and everybody can get to and from the school safely. >> supervisor yee: i appreciate you have to balance all these demands. i would like to make a suggestion and maybe outside of the bargaining activities. can we actually do a pilot project of some sort to test out whether it's feasible to move some of these crossing guards after they finished their hours at the public school and may or may not be services for seniors two blocks away, whether or not we could try that and see what happens on a smaller scale? part of the reason why i keep on bringing it up with the seniors is that we are, i think we are going to have a hearing on this to look at why there are so many of the collisions that are
happening to seniors and fatalities, and since we know that's happening, seems like one of the potential assistance to reducing that would be crossing guards for the seniors. i don't know if that's true, i don't have any data about that, i'm just going on intuition. so, for me this, i'm motivated for not just one reason, but a couple reasons to try this out. >> yes, thank you. and through the chair, i appreciate that and that may well be a very good way for us to test that. i think we would want to first evaluate to see if your intuition matches the data and the knowledge that we are able to glean. and it's something that we can certainly explore with sciu consistent with the terms of the collective bargaining agreement process. >> supervisor yee: thank you.
>> thank you very much. again, mr. reskin, wondering on item 5, up to 4 million, could we not take that and fund the crossing guards at 20 hours a week? >> in terms of the disposition of those funds, that's fully in the hands of the board of supervisors. in terms of how we are scheduling or making changes in the collective bargaining process, that's something that there is a process that the city and sciu have agreed to go through when there are issues such as a request for this kind of change and that process would need to be honored. that's a contract that was also approved by the board of supervisors. >> is it possible for this board to say we would take 2 million out and put it into a fund that you are going to put $150,000 in to decide to ensure that there would be funds to hire these crossing guards at 20 hours a
week? >> so, again, the disposition of these funds is wholly in the board of supervisors. if you approve the item, the dollars fall to the general fund and falls in your jurisdiction how you see fit. >> i see the controller standing up. >> good morning, supervisors. he is correct. this really is a choice before the board in june. to the extent that you reduce this transfer to the general fund and leave these funds with the m.t.a., it would provide additional resources with the m.t.a. create another challenge on the other side of that in your deliberations regarding the june 1st budget in the general fund. simply needs to balance as part of your kind of final determinations about how you want to spend general fund money. >> and a one-time source of
funds, going forward, we could expect the numbers to be probably a fifth of what these are, so, if we were to use these funds for this agency or any other agency, we would we creating a shortfall in the out years as well. >> only other option then for you to find the money in your $1.1 billion budget, is that correct? >> that is correct? >> right. so, we -- we could cut muni service, for example, to fund, to pay should we renegotiate with sciu, the crossing guards to provide school service, we would have to do that from within our budget, if not from excess general fund one-time revenues, that's correct. >> i think mr. reskin, the
proper wording is allocate funds to adequately staff the current demand for crossing guards to serve school students on a daily basis of when schools are operating. >> yes, i understand that. i believe what we have proposed does that, but i -- >> you have answered the question. >> supervisor cohen: so, i have a quick question, i want to direct to probably ben. ben, what would be the general fund cost if we were to kick in to absorb the operational costs of m.t.a.? if m.t.a., their budget was not funded. i'm hesitant to go down this line of questioning, but on the record, a considerable chunk of money coming from the general fund. if we do not approve m.t.a. budget, that means the general fund would have to kick in.
because life does need to keep going, the wheels need to keep going on the bus, so how much would that actually cost us? >> it's a good question, supervisor, and i don't have the answer to it. >> supervisor cohen: must cost a lot if you don't have the answer. at your fingertips right here, right now. >> i don't know if that's the case. but the way the charter provisions work, if the board of supervisors reject the m.t.a. budget, charter provides the controllers office is to make continuing provisions from the general fund for services. >> thank you very much. i want to be clear and on the record, not only for you, director, but also to the commissioners and the folks listening and watching. i am not interested in moving in that direction. i am interested in making sure that we are asking thoughtful questions as it relates to the m.t.a. budget. particularly paying close and careful attention to particularly the revenue arm of the m.s.a. and the contributions that it makes to the city.
so, i want to talk a little about item six now. item 6 authorizes five-year, $100 million a year credit for capital financing. b.l.a. report, 12% increase, 12% interest rate on this commercial paper. is that -- is that standard, or is that high? oh, hello, is that standard, or high, and what's driving this interest rate? >> good morning, supervisors, thank you for asking the question. 12% is the standard rate in all the city and all the commercial payment programs, p.u.c., a max rate that all the agreements use as a standard max rate. we have never been close to that, but we, all city departments include that. >> who sets that standard max rate? >> the office of public finance is the one that helped us determine that rate, and i think it's based on, and maybe ben can answer that question.
>> we'll defer to the controller. who sets that rate? >> just to be clear, this rate, memory serves correctly, actual borrowing rate on the actual commercial program paper we have in place for the city and the m.t.a. is much, much lower than that. hovering at or below 1% interest in recent years. >> considerably lower. >> creating a legal ceiling. >> i understand. >> i think it's a state, the state legislation that it's a 12% rate that's the maximum rate that local governments can charge, and the city basically used that for all the commercial programs. >> all right. thank you. next question is actually related to item five. what kind of outreach for people who have overpaid parking tickets? kind of a simple question but one that my office gets all the time. >> so, if you have overpaid, we
send you a letter initially saying you haveover paid, please let us know you want the money back, so we send you initial notice, 60 days after you have overpaid. if we don't hear back from you, we try to contact you one more time. of that, two years during the budget process, we do a public outreach process, list all the people on the website who are potential refunders, once again, third time you can get your money back. >> where can we get it -- >> m.t.a. website. we do do outreach group, we do it on the tv, we do it on the radio. and then we post it also. >> to be fair, i've never heard it on the radio, or on the television. >> i just wanted to make sure that people -- it's a fair question.
people overpay unknowingly, they have done a good thing by paying the ticket, and we have the responsibility -- >> we would rather refund the money to the individual. after multiple tries we see that the state requires us to put the funds back to general fund. >> my follow-up question, what types of violations are -- are most frequently overpaid? >> the biggest citation is a parking meter and street sweeping as a result of that. and sometimes they are multiple citations so people think they have paid for one, and it's, it could be a variety. but the parking meter violations are probably the biggest overpayment. >> thank you very much. to the b.l.a. team. do you have a report on items 5 and 6? >> we have a report on the commercial paper. >> supervisor cohen: i would
love to hear your thoughts. >> so, as you noted, the commercial paper program is $100 million and then the maximum 12% interest rate would add another $9 million, so what the board is up to 109 million. pointed out that 12% interest rate maximum, you see that in all this type of legislation, and it's not the actual interest rate that would be paid. on page, sorry, get to the page of the report. there are annual fees that go with the commercial paper program. somehow i lost that page. yes, page six of the report, i'm sorry. close to $500,000 per year for the program, and then also the cost of authorizing, about 171,000, but the commercial paper also is low interest loan pending issuance of bond and other debt and we recommend approval. >> supervisor cohen: recommend
approval. thank you four that recommendation. seeing that there are no further questions for item six and -- 5 and 6, i think we should go to public comment, any member of the public like to comment on 5 and 6, please come up to the podium. 5 and 6. all right. seeing none, public comment is closed. thank you. b.l.a. has made a recommendation. >> supervisor yee: for item 5, in terms of the transfer to general funds, is that already accounted for in the mayor's budget? >> you don't mind me answering, kelly kirkpatrick. committing the mayor's budget on june 1st and we are considering it as a source to help balance the general fund for that budget and more details will be provided on june 1st, but we are considering that a general fund
balancing source. >> supervisor yee: thank you. >> supervisor cohen: don't worry, june 1st, all living for june 1st. some for june 5th, too, i might add. certainly in this committee, this world is living for june 1st. ok. so, the b.l.a. made a recommendation as it relates to item 6. can we take that recommendation without objection? >> i don't believe it's a recommendation to amend, just to approve. >> supervisor cohen: thank you very much, appreciate that. let's take items 5 and 6 together and i'll make a motion to approve with the positive recommendation. may i take that without objection? and supervisor yee second that motion. without objection, thank you. >> items 5 and 6 adopted without objection with supervisor sheehy being absent. >> supervisor cohen: that's right. >> clerk: excused. >> supervisor cohen: he's excused. next up will be the environment. department of the environment. are you guys ready? >> supervisor yee: madam chair?
i wanted to ask you, did you accept the recommendations on both the port and the library? i know you did on the airport. >> supervisor cohen: the port and the library? >> the departments both agreed with those recommendations, and i'm not sure if the committee -- budget recommendations concerning the port budget and the budget recommendations concerning the library budget. >> item 4 is the library -- >> this is items 1, 2, and -- >> supervisor cohen: i see what you are saying. we have, i don't think we took action on that, correct me if i'm wrong. >> that's my understanding that you did accept the recommendations regarding the airport budget. >> supervisor cohen: but did not take a vote. >> you did on the airport. >> clerk: the vote was rescinded. no actions at this time. >> my question was, the same thing on the library and the -- >> supervisor cohen: no, that was not done for the library and
the port. that's incorrect. ok. all right. department of the environment, welcome. >> thank you, good afternoon. supervisors and madam chair. thank you harvey rose and kerry tam from the board budget legislative analyst office, kelly and chris from the mayor's budget analyst, and pleased to say we accept the recommendation and have no challenges. >> supervisor cohen: thank you very much for being here. colleagues, do you have any other questions for the department of the environment? all right. thank you. we can take public comment -- actually, no. we'll move on, already taken public comment. >> clerk: public comment has been taken on these items already. >> supervisor cohen: mr. rose. >> you want to hear our report on the environment? >> supervisor cohen: yep, waiting to hear it. >> on page 25, our rec