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tv   [untitled]    December 11, 2011 1:30am-2:00am PST

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the renovation of union square at the request of mayor willie brown, including the construction, financing, and operation of the square, a huge project, all within budget and on time. they give freely of their time and experience without any compensation. through their commitment, they have built, operated, and maintain these for the city. in fact, they have never promised anything to the city they have not delivered. these board members would be delighted to continue these worthwhile contributions to the city. they would want the lease is going forward to be more reflective of the services they never provided so long and will provide today so that they can continue to function in this capacity for the benefit of sfmta, the parking community, and the economic health. we look forward to working with the director of transportation as we negotiate these leases,
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which will serve all of these. the president of the uptown parking corp. just got out of a hospital over the weekend. he wanted to be your to express his intent but could not be here because of his health. secretary boomer: [reading names] chairman nolan: good afternoon. >> chairman, board of directors. my name is -- i am the manager of the uptown corp., with the oversight and management of the parking garages and plaza. i have actually been working in the parking industry for about 25 years, spending the last 20 years managing non-profit corporations for two of the non- profit corporations, including the uptown corporation.
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i am interested, warts, or come before this board, the parking authority, department of traffic, working closely with the comptroller's office, in the various oversight of these properties. i feel i a also been very fortunate to work under the guidance of the nonprofit board of directors, who in my mind really has the best interest of the community for which these barrages served and for the best interest of the city. i learned early on in the parking industry that parking is not just about space. it really is about people. we are in the service industry. it is really about the feelings and experience, that the patrons and the visitors get, when they come to a well lit, well maintained, service-oriented facility, which really marks their experiences of coming down, not of
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the district they are coming to visit, and i think that is and has always been the vision of the founding fathers of the nonprofit, which funded, built, and completed ti do urge you, ag forward to negotiating and finalizing the terms of our lease. thank you. secretary boomer: robert mamguchi. >> i echo and agree with the earlier comments about the nonprofits and the fact that we know in the early creation of all of these gorgeous, there were many to exist -- work in the financing of these projects. however, they have continued to
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have a very significant role in representing the community and the varied interests of the communities that are served by the garages, so i think it is very important, their continued existence. i really support the idea of the financing of a long-term capital improvements that are long overdue. our record supports that we have made several requests to make such improvements, and unfortunately, we have not been able to do that, so this is a very significant step forward. i will not get into the issue of the changing of the lease terms, but i understand from our staff and counsel that we have some serious issues with the preserved -- proposed terms. that aside, i am more troubled about not knowing part of the bond terms before approving the
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lease, and i think earlier, you were addressing the issue of seeing an official statement, and as i understand it, our staff has not seen the official statement, so we are not privy to the terms of the bond or the proposed bond, and there are issues for me as a director, which include the scope and budget of each rauch and hal the repayment will be allocated among those. frankly, the last thing would be that we should not really close with a lease terms until the bond actually closes. thank you. chairman nolan: anyone else but like to come forward on all items 11 through 15? seeing none. that afternoon. >> good afternoon, chairman nolan, vice chairman lee,
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secretary. i just want to commend those with the revenue finance bond issuance. as you have heard, the garages are in dire need of a lot of capital improvements, and the corporation has actually tried to submit capital improvements at the annual budget reviews, but unfortunately, it gets denied. the denials deal with the structural facility assessments, which i understand are now being drafted. there are six issues that were identified by the parking corporations, and we have come to a conclusion that these are the priorities in the draft les. we will have an opportunity to
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address it at a later time, so i just want to thank the staff for introducing the bond issuance. thank you. chairman nolan: thank you. members of the board? director heinicke? director heinicke: a lot of this is just confirmation. i think there were some comments i want to set straight. we're issuing bonds primarily for two purposes. one, we are refinancing existing debt. the borrowing terms are very good. and number two, the other primary component is issuing debt to get funds up front so we cannot build garages but actually sort of rehabilitate an update our existing garage fleet, with the purpose being that they are safe and serviceable for people using them, and that in turn allows us to obtain maximum revenue from the leases that we did with the companies to operate them.
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is that a fair summary of what we are doing? >> very well said. director heinicke: ok. on that, one further question about what we are not doing today, we are not approving any updating leases. rather, we're putting into place a rehabilitation plan so we can get optimize those leases, but we will have a system where the companies will know and love it more of the state of play before we renegotiate leases. >> the two things that you are not approving today is the statement that will come back to you in march and the final leases which also come back in the same time frame. you're basically authorizing the director of transportation on the lease in the new package. director heinicke: right. understood. with that, my only comment is, but i do not want to speak on
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behalf of director ramos and director brinkman, who is not here, for the rehabilitation of the parking garages to the extent possible from the accounting standpoint and possibly from a policy standpoint that we want to make sure that that debt is going to be serviced by revenue from the parking garages. tuesday it, i do not one general muni funds for transit to be used to finance debt that is for the parking garages, especially when the purpose of borrowing to rehabilitate the parking garage is is to bolster the revenue stream from the parking garages. maybe i should make that again to see if that is something we can receive assurances on today. >> absolutely, director. each will be responsible for their portion of the debt.
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that is the plan. director heinicke: thank you very much. chairman nolan: other members of the board? director lee? director lee: thank you. chairman nolan: is that a motion? is there a discussion? all in favor approved secretary boomer: -- all in favor? secretary boomer: mr. chair, with those items behind you, we do chairman nolan: we have received
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this. it is not an action item. i was asked yesterday about what does receiving actually mean. could you explain that a little bit? >> let's take two minutes to talk about this report. if you remember, we started having conversations about the charges, electronic bills, and what we decided to do was to hire a third party, and after speaking with multiple stakeholders, they are here to provide a presentation. chairman nolan: going back to the question, what actually is receiving? >> after from the public, to go back and take the comments and fold them into the next step, which is the best practices study that we are just about to award.
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it would be to take what we receive. they can also give you a highlight. >> this is to help you to make an informed decision when we do come back before you. this is for your edification. chairman nolan: do you want to hear the presentation or the public? how long of a presentation are you talking about? >> i think 10 or 15 minutes. chairman nolan: when did the
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report become made available to the public, ms. boomer ? secretary boomer: i would assume it was earlier than when it went on the website. chairman nolan: let's have a 10- minute report. >> many introduced nelson, who will give that message 15-minute presentation. chairman nolan: at most, a 10- minute presentation. welcome, sir. >> good afternoon, chairman. good afternoon, directors. my name is well rodman. -- will rodman. we are based here in san francisco, although i am from the boston office. i have been doing consulting for
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33 years now and have done my share of taxes studies over the course of those 33 years. i was asked to look at three topics that are intertwined. the fees with a credit card trips, back seat monitors, also called passenger information monitors or pim's, and the way bill data. they are also intertwined, and i urge you to think about the separately. my original presentation was to talk about the driver perception given that i need to
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kind of cut this and have, maybe to highlight the driver concerns. we had conversations with tax the owners, drivers, others, many of whom are in the audience today, and i want to thank them for being forthcoming and for being part of the study. we also did follow-up clarification phone calls. we looked at data from 11 cities and collected data from credit card firms and inc. staff comments. a little bit of background on credit card trips, they have been around -- the fees have
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been around since the advent of trips. the charging of drivers of such fees were banned in the 1990's. when credit card usage was not that prevalent, some composite and did not have this service. there was the charging of drivers up to 5% on credit card transactions, and for that, it was kind of an incentive to install back seat monitors and electronically collect waybill data. driver fees on transactions were being done in april 2011, and since then, there has been a freeze, pending the outcome.
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the 5% fee when it began in april, there were driver protests, and meetings were held. and the concerns were on things. the cost and that the remainder of the fee was used to cover the cost and acquisition of back seat monitors, in particular, and that this was just one more cost of many service fees and other costs that were being put on the drivers. there were also concerned about a 1099k form, which i will detail. the findings is that the costs of processing a credit cards are likely less than 5%. one greta: representative said about 3%, and another said between 2.35% and 2.5%.
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new york city primarily does this in arbitrary fashion, and it was proliferated. where does the balance go? equipment costs, and all of the equipment, not just the back seat monitors. customer service support, chargeback services, warranty service, and profit, but there is no breakdown available, so you really do not know, and the credit card firms do not allowed to the information. how much is this? realistically, on a $300 revenue per day, maybe $7.50, based on the amount of credit card usage. how onerous is that? if it was $4.50 to $7.50, it is not that onerous, but when you consider all of the other fees that the drivers are paying, the
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late fees, the company is charging for credit card processing materials, internal tipping ranging from $12 to $20 per day to extern of tipping, -- external tipping, no pun intended, it became a tipping point. drivers were also concerned about a 1099 k. this is a new form issued by credit-card companies per the irs that detail credit card transactions. a lot of drivers were concerned about drivers having to comply with irs regulations and that it may jeopardize some drivers getting public assistance. this is very similar to whenever you have a cash based business. i mentioned a device in the reports primarily because of the
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transaction fee being 2.75%. it is an alternative device that some drivers are using. in our findings, we found that generally be in vehicle equipment is much more secure. it lines up with all of the data in the right place, so there is integrity to the data. it is generally a good thing, and it provides better customer support in terms of the information that comes out in recedes. so generally, i am not advocating the use of these alternative devices. i am advocating the use of the in vehicle equipment. back seat monitors, they are
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touchscreens. have all of your experience to them in taxis? looking at peer cities, they are required in boston and new york. they were in some of the other cities that we looked at. as of mid september, the five companies that were participating in the waiver program collectively had installed about 300 of the monitors. they have not fully met their obligations. and again, they were included in the waiver program as an incentive. the staff thought that this was a good thing and for the customers especially. anecdotal information suggests that driver tips would increase as well.
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so do they enhance the san francisco taxi experience? no one knows for sure. one of the things we were looking at was a follow-up survey back sonali mentioned. information about taxicab drivers and the way of finding information. however, more data and customer perception on the volume, the ease of use, and just in general the alternative devices, more data is necessary. director: can i interrupt with a question? i understand that sometimes more data is needed, but other cities have done this. have other cities studied this, as san francisco is >> there was
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a new york survey of customers of the things they liked most about taxis and the thi like abd the number two on the dislike less was the, quote, annoying television monitors. director: until they learned how to use the new button. >> can we get that back? positive comments we heard from san francisco drivers. they would like to see more hard data as to whether or not it does increase tips. compromising safety. what if you have to hear the same thing 20 times in your office? there is a delay or responding to the next trip. if the system is down, you have to use a knuckle busting imprint
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machine. there can be an obstacle. a couple of drivers mentioned that they destroy the driver- customer relationship, and it is just one more thing. they have positive and negative perceptions. let me keep going in the interest of time. many felt that this should be a business decision and not tied into the incentive. so do back seat monitors prompt higher tipping amounts? the preliminary results are that they do. there is the yellow analysis of 100 vehicles, although they shortcoming was that it was different months in terms of before and after, but this suggests that the tips went up.
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another analysis of the same months, limited in terms of data, 3.2% higher. so the results are encouraging, but certainly more broad-based, more comprehensive analysis and the follow-up study your doing should be done. one of the really interesting things that came out of the results is that it appears that credit card usage increased same cabs, same month, before and after the monitors were used, said this suggests that these are prompting credit cards to be used. yellow presented some information with respect to how much of their services were credit card, of the total trips 40%. the credit card use is increasing by 2 to 3 points per year, so they are here to stay.
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your decision to require credit cards i think is a good one. do they increase to radio frequency exposure? the quick answer is no they do not, although there were a couple of holes in the analysis. the electronic capture of waybill data, it is currently stored on hard copy. a picture tells 1000 warrants. >> issues with paper waybill data, this is my opinion. they are unreliable as far as data for planning because there is under reporting of service. there are documented cases of labels being manufactured, some
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drivers don't fill them out. why is this happening? it is a cash business, it is income reported. the pros and cons of electronic capture of data, generally, i am pretty sure everybody agrees that it is a more accurate way of getting that data. several san francisco taxi is already doing and have that capability. there are some shortcomings, but the inaccuracies can be corrected fairly easily. and even with those inaccuracies, they are way more accurate than paper. the ones i spoke with agree that the data electronically captured was more accurate and the accuracy of the data is key to proper planning. the drivers also understood that certain information is needed to
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confirm driver history. home they didn't want personal income data reported for various reasons. generally, we found that eight of 11 required has you do read acquired to extend credit cards, he ranged between 3% and &, 5% being the most common. in all these cases, drivers were paying for the credit-card feet of the customers pay for it. it required a state legislative change that would be required in california as well. new york city is considering a fee reduction. loss angeles has a $7 minimum and it is the only city that did. most of the city's contacted did not require back seat monitors.
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they left it as a business decision to the taxi companies. it is required in boston and new york city, and half of the city's require a electronic reporting. in every case, it was statistical information being reported to the regulatory body and not personal income. our recommendations. the first, i have to preface this by saying that one of the things that the taxi services and staff said, require credit card usage, we need to make sure that the costs associated with that are minimized to the greatest extent possible. the way to do that, you can pick a fee, a 3% fee and see who


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