Leland Yee protests Nat Ford’s severance payout 

State senator and San Francisco mayoral candidate Leland Yee has gathered 1,000 signatures from citizens in an effort to get the Municipal Transportation Agency to rescind its $384,000 severance package for departing director Nathaniel Ford.

Ford is stepping down as the executive director of the SFMTA, which operates Muni, on June 30. Under the terms of his contract, which was last renewed in 2010, Ford is obligated to receive one-year’s salary, all unpaid bonuses or deferred compensation, and three months health coverage — a package that amounts to $384,000 — if he is terminated by the board for their convenience.

Yee has stated that the agency is under no obligation to pay Ford that “golden parachute”, since SFMTA board chair Tom Nolan has described the departure as a mutually-agreed upon decision, and not a termination. However, Ford has said it was ultimately the board’s call for him to go.

According to a release by Jim Stearns, Yee’s political strategist, the state senator hopes to make an appearance at Tuesday’s SFMTA board meeting to urge the body to rescind its severance package for Ford. If Yee cannot attend the meeting due to scheduling conflicts, one of his aides will speak on his behalf, while also presenting the 1,000 citizen signatures in protest of Ford’s payout.

wreisman@sfexaminer.com

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Will Reisman

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