After two months of nominations it's now time for the 2014 planning committee elections. The Bus Riders Union Planning Committee is the leadership and decision making body for the union. It is made up of 5 volunteer members who serve for one year, and 4 LCSC staff members. There are 8 candidates running for election this year. Each candidate has written a short statement to introduce themselves to the membership.
In the second part of our series of delegation visit reportbacks for the Transit Rider's for Public Transportation National Campaign, Bus Rider's Union members, John Bell and Maria Paz Jaen, visited the office of their congressmember, Xavier Becerra on Thursday September 3, 2009. They urged Congressman Becerra to co-sponsor and support H.R. 2746 and the TRPT campaign platform for better low fare bus service for low income communities of color.
BRU takes it to City Hall Chambers and the County
Board of Supervisors Hearing Room! A week after we held a press conference to unveil the
results of our 2300 person survey that gave MTA
bus service a D average, the BRU Action Committee decided it was time to step
outside of the MTA Board room and visit Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa,
Councilmember Jose Huizar and Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas in their home turf.
BRU members spend 2 days at City Hall doing delegation visits to LA City Council and have a surprising encounter with Mayor Villaraigosa where they hand deliver 100's of postcards grading MTA bus service.
After months of resultless waiting for Supervisor Ridley-Thomas to champion bus rider's needs, the BRU addressed him directly during the public comments section of the County Board of Supervisors Meeting, presenting the appalling MTA bus performance results from the BRU Survey and urging him to adopt the BRU Clean Air and Economic Justice Plan as a basis for the 20% of Measure R funds that were dedicated to improvement in the bus transit system.
With the reauthorization of the Federal Surface Transportation Act (FSTA) still pending in Congress, the first delegation of Bus Riders Union members visited House Representative Watson's office to meet with her district transportation staffer, Ken Bell, last Thursday August, 20th, 2009.
The BRU held a press conference to release a 2600 person survey that revealed the strong dissatisfaction that bus riders have with MTA bus service. The results gave MTA a "D" grade in almost every category...
Dozens of BRU members worked to collect close to 3000 postcards from bus
riders who were asked to grade their bus service in LA County. People were asked
to grade MTA bus service anywhere from an A for excellent thru an F for
extremely poor, on the following aspects: fares, night service, on-time
Barbara Ehrenreich's op-ed, Is it now a crime to be poor?, published on August 9th in the New York Times is an important contribution, written for the readers of the New York Times, about the criminalization of poverty in the U.S.
As local transit agencies cut much needed service and raise fares, despite the obligation the U.S. has to reduce green house gas emissions to curb global warming, forces in the world are calling for the restriction of auto use and working to implement policies to invest in a sustainable mass transit. Critical factors that shape the BRU’s programmatic demands – auto restriction, bus-centered system with bus only lanes and fare reductions as a means to free fares – are highlighted in the following articles of the last two weeks.
BRU member Cesar Chavez testifies at the July 23rd MTA Board Meeting, demanding that the Clean Air and Economic Justice plan be included in the MTA's Long Range Transportation Plan. Click here to read the blog and see him speak!
BRU members equipped with cell phones jumped on the buses to encourage bus riders to make phone calls to their congressmembers to co-sponsor H.R. 2746, a bill in the House introduced by Congressmember Carnahan (MO), that will allow 30-50% of federal transit dollars to be invested into transit operations.
As Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa prepared to enter his second term as Mayor of Los Angeles, the Bus Riders Union, Los Angeles Community Action Network and South Asian Network made a deliberate choice to take public our struggles with him about policing.
BRU's rally at Mayor Villaraigosa's Inauguration yesterday received extensive media coverage. Along with our allies from the South Asian Network, and the Los Angeles Community Action Network, we were calling on the mayor to reduce his prioritization of police funding over social services.
Last Tuesday, MTA gave us just two days' notice of a special "workshop" on the 2009 Long-Range Transit Plan. This "workshop" was actually where they wanted to adopt the 2009 LRTP. The public has not seen a version of the LRTP since 2008! We knew we had to stop this undemocratic, unethical vote.