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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 26, 2008 | Steve Hymon
Superior Court Judge Thomas McKnew ruled Monday against a lawsuit brought by the Bus Riders Union over fare increases approved last year by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority board. The Bus Riders Union and the Natural Resources Defense Council had sued the MTA, alleging that the agency should have done an environmental analysis before raising fares because fare hikes usually result in fewer people taking mass transit and more people driving. In a tentative ruling earlier this month, McKnew found that the MTA didn't have to do the study because California law provides exceptions to transit agencies that use fares to pay for operating expenses.
ARTICLES BY DATE
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 16, 2013 | By Dan Weikel, Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles County bus drivers say they are regularly becoming ill - sometimes while behind the wheel - from pesticides sprayed inside their vehicles by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. At least 14 Metro drivers are pursuing workers' compensation claims, and more than 110 have signed a petition that demands a halt to the spraying, according to their attorney. Some operators are on medical leave, and a few say they have left Metro because of repeated exposure. "You can be driving your bus and get hit with the symptoms," said Frank Portillo, a 23-year coach operator who retired in March, sooner than planned, because of medical issues he believes are pesticide related.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 27, 2012 | By Ari Bloomekatz, Los Angeles Times
Saying that both federal and local officials have mostly ignored their calls for transportation reform in Los Angeles, the Bus Riders Union on Wednesday called on President Obama to help restore about 1 million hours in bus service cuts made over the last several years. Hundreds of people led by the group rallied outside City Hall and loudly chanted: "President Obama, enforce, restore, expand our civil rights. " They danced and played drums, urged Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa to take up their cause, and derided the Federal Transit Administration for not recognizing what they say are clear civil rights violations by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority caused by the service cuts.
NEWS
November 2, 2012 | By Dan Turner
Measure J, the Nov. 6 ballot proposal that would extend a half-cent sales tax hike in Los Angeles County for another 30 years to accelerate transportation projects, was endorsed by The Times because it promises to ease traffic flow and stimulate the local economy without raising other taxes. But activists led by the Bus Riders Union say it will have an unintended effect: raising transit fares. The opponents aren't necessarily wrong -- future revenue and fare demands for the transit system are tough to predict, but past rail construction booms in L.A. have indeed resulted in reduced service for bus riders and higher fares overall.
OPINION
March 12, 2004
I am very glad that the consent decree between the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the Bus Riders Union will end in 2006 (March 10). The decree has given power to an organization that has neither credibility nor understanding of mass transit operations. Its claims of "transit racism" have faded into obsolescence, as some 13 years of rail in Los Angeles have shown. The union refuses to accept that the bus riders it supposedly serves (like me, for one) would rather have more rail services to more destinations, not more buses that just sit idly in traffic.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 9, 1999 | JEFFREY L. RABIN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The Bus Riders Union said Thursday that it will urge the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's bus and rail passengers to stage a fare strike next week to protest the agency's plan to increase the cost of public transit. The fare strike is the latest in a series of actions in response to the MTA's proposed increases in the prices of basic fares, discount tokens and popular monthly, semimonthly and weekly passes, as well as the passes used by senior citizens, students and the disabled.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 29, 2005 | Richard Fausset, Times Staff Writer
In his first meeting as chairman of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa on Thursday reiterated his campaign pledge to expand rail service in the Los Angeles area. But the new mayor made an equally strong commitment to bus service, one of several moves that appeared to mollify the Bus Riders Union, the most vocal opponent of expanded commuter rail lines.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 10, 2000 | JEFFREY L. RABIN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
A festive Chinatown groundbreaking ceremony celebrating the resumption of construction on the long-delayed light rail line from downtown Los Angeles to Pasadena was disrupted Friday by Bus Riders Union protesters, who accused officials of backing costly rail projects instead of better bus service. The dozen demonstrators interrupted remarks by Mayor Richard Riordan and state Sen.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 13, 2003 | Kurt Streeter, Times Staff Writer
An angry group of bus riders blasted Los Angeles County transportation officials at a public hearing Saturday for considering fare increases, calling the proposed move unfair to the poor. Throughout the hearing, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's board was loudly heckled by a group of about 150 members of the Bus Riders Union. They called the MTA racist and at one point loudly chanted at the board: "Shame! Shame! Shame!"
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 1, 2001 | DOUGLAS P. SHUIT, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Two Los Angeles mayoral candidates--Rep. Xavier Becerra and City Atty. James K. Hahn--joined the militant Bus Riders Union on Wednesday in urging the MTA to drop its appeal of a court order requiring that it buy at least 248 new buses. "Ya basta! Ya basta! (Enough already! Enough already!)," Becerra proclaimed at a news conference with Hahn and bus riders at the union's Wilshire Boulevard headquarters. "The MTA belongs on the streets, not in the courts."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 27, 2012 | By Ari Bloomekatz, Los Angeles Times
Saying that both federal and local officials have mostly ignored their calls for transportation reform in Los Angeles, the Bus Riders Union on Wednesday called on President Obama to help restore about 1 million hours in bus service cuts made over the last several years. Hundreds of people led by the group rallied outside City Hall and loudly chanted: "President Obama, enforce, restore, expand our civil rights. " They danced and played drums, urged Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa to take up their cause, and derided the Federal Transit Administration for not recognizing what they say are clear civil rights violations by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority caused by the service cuts.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 24, 2012 | By Ari Bloomekatz, Los Angeles Times
A federal agency has ordered Los Angeles County transportation officials to review whether cutting hundreds of thousands of hours in bus service over the last few years was unjust to riders. The demand came in a scathing letter Monday from Federal Transit Administration chief Peter Rogoff that discusses "disturbing findings" of a civil rights investigation into policies and practices at the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority. Those include Metro's failure to conduct the proper analyses when implementing service changes over the last several years.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 27, 2012 | By Ari Bloomekatz, Los Angeles Times
As the Metro bus lumbered through South Los Angeles carrying passengers headed to work or school, Jesus Navarro could barely keep his eyes open after finishing a graveyard shift in Westwood. The slender 30-year-old security guard with a long, black metal flashlight poking out of his backpack wasn't worried about nodding off. Line 305, which zigzags diagonally for about 20 miles across Los Angeles, carries him home, and he doesn't have to change a seat. "It's a blessing that you have one bus … that can take you from point A to point B," Navarro said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 21, 2011 | By Ari Bloomekatz, Los Angeles Times
Judi Redman has taken the bus to job interviews for about a year. The South Los Angeles resident said things sometimes get awkward when interviewers ask if she has reliable transportation. "I lie and say yes, but the bus is not reliable," said the 51-year-old. A member of the Bus Riders Union, Redman said she can't afford a car. Redman joined about 250 other transit activists in Parish Hall at Immanuel Presbyterian Church in Koreatown to testify Saturday about their own experiences with public transportation.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 15, 2011 | By Ari Bloomekatz, Los Angeles Times
Wilshire Boulevard, the most heavily used bus corridor in Los Angeles with lines running every couple of minutes and tens of thousands of passengers enduring lengthy and crowded rides, is about to get a facelift designed to bring riders some relief. To streamline and speed commutes from MacArthur Park to Centinela Avenue at the eastern edge of Santa Monica, the Los Angeles City Council voted Tuesday to construct bus-only lanes along 7.7 miles of that stretch. Officials estimate that it will shave 11 minutes off a nearly one-hour trip.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 25, 2011 | By Ari Bloomekatz, Los Angeles Times
Amid protests and heated debate, the board of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority on Thursday narrowly approved sweeping cuts to its bus service. Plans call for nine lines to be eliminated in late June and for 11 to be scaled back through actions such as discontinuing weekend service. The changes will result in a total reduction of 305,000 service hours in 2012?about 4% of all bus hours?and will drop Metro's peak operating fleet to about 1,900 buses. "These are cuts, upon cuts, upon cuts," said Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who cast one of six dissenting votes on the measure; seven board members voted yes. "The only way this system is going to work is with a first-class bus system and a first-class rail system.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 16, 2011 | By Dan Weikel, Los Angeles Times
Spurred by complaints about cuts in local bus service, federal officials said Tuesday they would investigate whether the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority had discriminated against minority and low-income transit riders. As part of a planned compliance review, the Federal Transit Administration will look into allegations leveled last fall by the Bus Riders Union, a nonprofit organization that alleges that MTA service reductions during the last three years violate the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 28, 2010 | By Martha Groves, Los Angeles Times
Bus commuters along congested Wilshire Boulevard have long dreamed of barreling along in their own special lane, unimpeded by automobiles and other vehicles. Come Dec. 9, they could get their wish as the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority board considers a $31.5-million proposal to designate bus-only lanes during morning and evening rush hours along 8.7 miles of the busy boulevard, the region's most heavily used transit corridor. The Bus Riders Union and other proponents tout the Wilshire "bus rapid transit" project as a boon to public health and the environment that would improve the reliability of service, shorten transit times and encourage more drivers to get out of their cars and take the bus. But high-rise residents of Westwood's "condo canyon" are pushing to exempt a nearly mile-long stretch of Wilshire between Comstock and Selby avenues because, they contend, the bus-only lane would cause huge backups for motorists in an area where traffic already moves smoothly.
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