Last we heard of him, Nat Ford was on his way to being the new head of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. But, according to theWashington Post, late Wednesday, Ford received a message from DC informing him that they’ve “reopened the search” for potential candidates.
And should they deny him the position, it is not guaranteed that Ford will continue as the director of the SFMTA. In fact, many board members are now questioning his loyalty and dedication to the SFMTA.
According to SF Streetsblog
, Supervisor Scott Wiener said, “I like and respect Nat Ford but it’s also very important that we have an executive director of the MTA who is completely focused on the agency, and who wants the job. And it seems like Mr. Ford is looking elsewhere and we need a complete focus on MTA.”
Chairman Ross Mirkarimi also pointed out that the pay history of directors has risen because they “are always looking for the next best thing.” He said that this system is a “self-perpetuating cycle [created] by the transit directors themselves and by the industry that supports the rotation of these transit directors so that they keep earning more money each time they relocate, and there is no end in sight. The theory behind this is, in order to get someone that’s competitive and comparable to the industry standard, we have to spend $50,000 more each time we get a new director. Pretty soon we’re gonna be at $400,000 for a new director. I find that absurd.”
It seems that members of the SFMTA board itself are fed up with their directors’ preoccupation with their wallets rather than our transit system. If Nathaniel Ford is booted from the SFMTA, let’s hope that his replacement won’t just be another addition to this self-perpetuating cycle.