Monday, June 27, 2011

Fairness, Eh?

Image: dreyboblue
I know, I know, I should check my email more often.

While going through the spam tonight I noticed this gem from last Wednesday.  My first thought is that the "SF Small Business Owners for Fairness SF" may want to target their "outreach" a little more narrowly:
Have you ever been five minutes late to move your car...and gotten hit with a parking ticket? Are you sick and tired of forking over your hard-earned cash to the city? Don't have a $384,000 severance package to pay for your parking ticket like Nat Ford does?

If you've gotten a parking ticket in San Francisco within the past year, SF Small Business Owners For Fairness, an organization of San Francisco's minority and family owned local stores and businesses, wants to hear your story and wants to pay your ticket!

Click the link below to tell your parking ticket story and the best three stories will get their tickets paid!

http://www.itisonlikedonkeykong.com/index.php?q=content/petitions

Each year almost 2 million parking tickets are given out in San Francisco, so be sure to share the link with your friends and family!
If you've read any of my past entries it might be obvious that I see no benefit to making it easier for people to park in San Francisco.  Past that, one driver's "I was just five minutes late" is another's "there's never any parking in this neighborhood."  To what extent are these small businesses (taking them at their word that they are 'composed of minority and family owned local stores and businesses') working against their goals by limiting parking availability?

But my real objection is with the premise that making an area more accessible to drivers is good for business.  It's not.  Facts speak for themselves.

UPDATE

The Examiner reports that the organization is a front for a group that opposes SF's regulations against advertising.  Curiouser and curiouser...

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Actually, the article makes clear that people who drive spend more per trip than people who use transit. And, that in aggregate, drivers are a very important source of revenue for businesses. Those are the clear facts that I see.

So eliminating parking or making it more difficult to drive would hurt businesses (unless you are assuming that everyone who drives would just hop on public transport -- which is highly unlikely particularly if they are coming from the suburbs or areas of the City poorly served by public transport or favor driving for any number of other reasons).

In short, the facts disprove your opinions.

Pedestrianist said...

The two linked articles do indicate that drivers tend to spend more per trip. But they make so many fewer trips that their economic contribution is the minority.

If the city didn't fail to execute its Transit First policy local businesses may need to get used to customers spending less per visit, yes. But I'm quite sure they wouldn't mind having more customers and a fatter bottom line.

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