09/02/2011 03:57 pm ET | Updated Nov 02, 2011

San Francisco Muni On-Time Rate Drops For First Time Since 2008

It's not easy being Muni.

Like an angsty tween, San Francisco's very own transit agency has been going though a lot of changes lately and, as a result, its grades are starting to suffer.

The agency just got a new Executive Director, backers of its ambitious Central Subway plan are defecting left and right and its stations keep getting shut down by demonstrators protesting a completely different transit agency.

The last one wasn't even remotely Muni's fault. How many people have even been shot at Muni stations, anyway?

Oh, right.

Anyway, the agency just released its performance numbers for the past fiscal year and, for the first time since 2008, the agency's overall on-time rate has decreased.

Muni posted a 73 percent on-time performance rate for the 2011 fiscal year, which ended on June 30, a regression from last fiscal year, when the agency tallied a 73.5 percent mark -- the highest in its history. The 2011 numbers marked the first time since 2008 — when the agency posted a 70.6 percent mark — that Muni did not improve upon its on-time rate from the prior year.

Muni's performance increased during the first half of the year but experienced an even steeper slide during the remainder. The San Francisco Chronicle reports:

After on-time performance slipped during the final two quarterly reporting periods of 2010, dipping to as low as 71.1 percent, the rate jumped to 74.7 percent in the first three months of this year, a fact the Municipal Transportation Agency failed to make public.

In 1999, San Francisco voters passed a measure mandating Muni reach an 85 percent on-time rate by 2004. Even though Muni has never come close to achieving that lofty goal, its performance rate of between 70 and 75 percent is standard for other big-city transit systems that are forced to contend with street traffic and lack the speed-enhancing benefits of its vehicles receiving priority at traffic signals.