Bay Area Region

Mehserle Probe Latest in BART’s Race Problems

Submitted by News Desk on Thu, 07/15/2010 - 1:51pm

New America Media

Is BART the most racist transit agency in the nation?

That’s a question Bay Area residents should be asking after the U.S. Justice Department announced Friday that it was opening an investigation into the transit agency’s handling of BART police officer Johannes Mehserle’s fatal shooting of Oscar Grant. The investigation, which the Justice Department confirms is being launched together with the FBI and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in San Francisco. But it is not the first effort by the Obama administration to rein in BART over civil rights.

BART backup plan revives airport tram

Submitted by News Desk on Tue, 07/13/2010 - 4:54pm

Undaunted after losing millions of dollars in funding, BART is cobbling together a backup funding plan to build a link to Oakland’s airport.

BART staffers said they may be able to raise $70 million by tapping federal programs, additional county sales tax funds, more Port of Oakland contributions and more money from bridge tolls.

That would replace the $70 million yanked last February after federal transportation officials said BART failed to submit an adequate study of whether the airport connector project discriminated against poor residents.

BART staffers will present the backup funding plan to the BART board as early as July 22. Download attachment below.

Homebuilder Lennar uses federal taxpayer funds to balance its books

Submitted by News Desk on Fri, 07/09/2010 - 11:38am

In 2006, things were looking good for Lennar, America's second-biggest homebuilder. That year, before the U.S. housing market's epic collapse, the Miami-based giant pulled down $15.6 billion in revenues and closed sales on 29,568 homes. The ink was just drying on a massive and potentially lucrative deal to transform Treasure Island with new housing complexes, and the well-connected Lennar already had secured a deal to develop the Hunters Point Shipyard that the Navy was turning over to San Francisco.

BART Moves Ahead With OAC Connecter Despite Civil Rights Violations

Submitted by News Desk on Tue, 06/29/2010 - 4:21pm

Even though BART is not in compliance with the Federal Transportation Administration's (FTA) Title VI civil rights regulations, the agency has sought funding from numerous local, regional, state and federal outlets to continue the Oakland Airport Connector (OAC) project, a three-mile elevated tramway that would connect the Oakland Airport with the Oakland Coliseum Station.

Internal documents obtained by Streetsblog and The Bay Citizen, which reported on the matter this morning) revealed an internal scramble by BART staff and an array of local and state transportation agencies to come up with money to replace the $70 million in stimulus funding the FTA denied BART because of its failure to demonstrate a suitable fare analysis for the OAC project.

BART shapes up on Civil Rights? Facelift or Real Change?

Will BART’s Public Meetings be a Facelift or Create Real Change?

From the murder of Oscar Grant to fare hikes and the fight over the Oakland Airport Connector, BART has been in the news A LOT this past year. These events have crystallized something that many of us have known for awhile – That BART has been consistently indifferent to the lives, rights and needs of our community.

Oakland Airport Connector Ignored Civil Rights Laws

Submitted by Staff on Wed, 03/31/2010 - 11:25am
The Federal Transit Administration pulled $70 million in stimulus funds from BART's Oakland Airport Connector project last month based on our civil rights complaint, finding that BART ignored civil rights laws. Fortunately, the Bay Area didn't lose that funding - it was distributed among the region's ailing transit systems. But the transit administration's action makes it clear that public money must be spent fairly or agencies will be held accountable.


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