San Francisco's head of HR named to panel investigating -- and delaying -- potential BART strike.
We've said it before
and we're saying it again: The only thing worse than bitching about BART is bitching about not having BART to bitch about.
At least in the short-term, commuters have been spared this fate. Gov. Jerry Brown on Sunday intervened
in the toxic labor stalemate, buying the warring parties bonus time to strike a deal.
At the behest of BART management Brown took action, appointing a three-person panel to "investigate the threatened strike." A report is due on the governor's desk within seven days, and no strike or lockout is permissible during the panel's investigation. So, it figures that this action has provided a week's reprieve.
"For the sake of the people of the Bay Area, I urge -- in the strongest terms possible -- the parties to meet quickly and as long as necessary to get this dispute resolved," reads Brown's letter to all of those parties.
That panel will be chaired by Jacob Appelsmith, and also include Micki Callahan and Robert Balgenorth.
Callahan is San Francisco's director of human resources (and has worked on both the union and management side of the tables); Balgenorth is is president emeritus of the State Building and Construction Trades Council of California and a former honcho at the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers; and Appelsmith is the future chief counsel for U.C. Davis and current director of the state's Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control.
The three lucky panelists will, per Brown's letter, earn $100 a day.
Brown's action came after a Sunday letter
from BART Board President Tom Radulovich calling for the imposition of a 60-day cooling-off period. While unions were less than enthralled
with the governor's step, Radulovich tells SF Weekly
"He appointed a good review panel, so we're pleased."
"We believe the public should not be deprived of this essential public service unless all alternatives to avoid a work stoppage have been utilized," reads Radulovich's letter. "We appreciate your vigilance in monitoring this process and trust we may continue to rely on your help as we continue to work out this complex dispute."
That seems like a good bet.
In other news, San Francisco car-sharing start-up Uber's presciently timed Monday launch of a special boat rental service
just became a little less prescient.
Rachel Swan contributed to this report