City Yellow Lights Too Short, Judge Says Before Tossing Red Light Tickets

Some of Chicago’s yellow lights are too short, according to an administrative law judge who said he’s thrown out “60 to 70 percent” of red light camera tickets he’s come across recently More »

Trib Says Mayor Got $10,000 In Donations Linked To Red Light Camera Bidder

The Chicago Tribune is alleging the wives of two executives for a company vying for the city’s red light camera program donated $5000 each to Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s political campaign. According to More »

Writer Predicts No Other Cities Will Ever Privatize Their Parking Meters

NBC Chicago writer Edward McClelland last week boldly predicted that due to Chicago’s horrible experience with it’s infamous and hated parking meter lease deal, no city will ever privatize their parking meters More »


City Taking Steps To Collect Unpaid Ticket Debt, Officials Say

The city is working to collect $1.5 billion in ticket debt.

The city is working to collect $1.5 billion in ticket debt.

City officials said Tuesday that they are taking steps to collect the $1.5 billion in unpaid tickets and fines owed the city, but said the vast majority of debt was on the books long before the mayor took office in 2011.

The Expired Meter and DNAinfo Chicago reported earlier Tuesday that Chicago is owed $1.5 billion for unpaid parking, red-light and speed-camera tickets — a potential cash cow for the city.

“Nearly 70 percent of the debt cited in this story was generated before Mayor Emanuel took office, and in fact, it is debt that stretches back a quarter of a century to before the fall of the Berlin Wall,” Susan Hofer, a spokeswoman for the Department of Finance, said in an email sent late Tuesday morning. “Many of those who owe money from two decades ago are deceased, have moved, or are otherwise unreachable.”

The Expired Meter & DNA Info reported that the vast majority of the debt, $1.3 billion, is for parking tickets, while red-light camera tickets represent $205 million and speed cameras account for $27 million in outstanding fines, fees and penalties owed to the city.

The debt is far higher than that owed to other major cities like New York or Los Angeles.

Read more at DNA Info Chicago.

“The Driver’s Side” – News From The Motorist’s Perspective

breaking_news1By Otto Mobile

Your transportation related headlines for Tuesday March 31st, 2015

 Parking Ticket Geek: Emanuel has allowed scofflaws to rack up $1.5 billion in unpaid tickets (The Expired Meter)

Parking Ticket Geek: New York and LA are tougher on ticket scofflaws than Chicago  (The Expired Meter)

New luxury cars service coming to Chicago (Crain’s Chicago Business)

Believe It Or Not, N.Y. & L.A. Tougher On Scofflaws Than Chicago


The nation’s largest three cities all employ the Denver boot to convince scofflaws to pay their tickets–but New York and Los Angeles are much more aggressive in their enforcement.

Chicagoans may think the city is tough when it comes to cracking down on motorists who don’t pay their parking and camera tickets.

The truth is, other cities are even tougher.

And it may be because of these more aggressive policies that other major U.S. cities like New York and Los Angeles are collecting more of their debt compared to Chicago.

All three cities employ the dreaded Denver boot to immobilize the vehicles of drivers who don’t pay their ticket debt fast enough.

Los Angeles allows drivers to have as many as five unpaid tickets before the boot can be attached or the vehicle is towed and impounded.

Read more at DNA Info Chicago.

Parking, Camera Ticket Debt Soars To $1.5 Billion Under Emanuel

Chicago's parking, red light and speed camera ticket debt has risen to a combined $1.5 billion under Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

Chicago’s parking, red light and speed camera ticket debt has risen to a combined $1.5 billion under Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

From when he first took office, Mayor Rahm Emanuel has taken a hard line
on recovering money owed to the city — particularly when it comes to parking ticket
scofflaws or those who rack up red-light or speed camera tickets.

But under his administration, the amount of unpaid tickets and fines have continued
to grow — to a staggering $1.5 billion, according to data obtained through a Freedom
of Information Act request by The Expired Meter. It accrues at a pace of $1 million a
week, documents show, far more than what the city collects from tickets it issues.

“The Driver’s Side” – News From The Motorist’s Perspective

Breaking News!By Otto Mobile

Your transportation related headlines for Monday March 30th, 2015

An “easy to understand” guide to the Byrne Circle Interchange construction (

Cops warn of garage burglaries in West Town and East Village (DNA Chicago)

Progressive Insurance To Charge More For Aggressive Drivers

SnapshotProgressive Insurance’s “pay as you drive” program called Snapshot is changing things up–at least in one state according to the Daily Democrat News.

Progressive’s Snapshot device gets plugged into the car’s diagnostic port and  allows the auto insurance company to monitor the driving behavior of their motorists. Up until now, motorists who didn’t drive a lot of miles or were considered safe drivers were given discounts for their good driving behavior.

Congress Parkway Bridge Temporarily Closed Early Sunday Morning

Aerial view of the Congress Parkway Bridge

Aerial view of the Congress Parkway Bridge

The Congress Parkway bridge will be closed for testing and maintenance for five hours early Sunday morning.

Starting at midnight Sunday, the bascule bridge which connects  the Eisenhower Expressway (I-290) to Congress Parkway and spans the Chicago River will be closed to traffic to check the lifting systems and to do routine maintenance according to the Chicago Department of Transportation.

The bridge will reopen at 5 AM.

All vehicles will be detoured around the closure via Wells Street, Harrison Street and Canal Street.

Drivers should expect delays.

“The Driver’s Side” – News From The Motorist’s Perspective

Daily-News-headline-newspapersBy Otto Mobile

Your transportation related headlines for Friday March 27, 2015

Here’s a riddle – what do Aaron Schock and Abe Lincoln have in common (hint: it has to do with mileage)  (Chicago Sun Times)

Dumb and Dumber: drunk driver tries to bail out his friend in jail on DUI charges (Chicago Tribune)

General Assembly approves plan to divert $350 million in state road funds to fix the budget gap (Chicago Tribune)

Rogers Park Road Rage Incident Caught On Video

Road rage is usually no laughing matter, but the two Einsteins in this video inadvertently will add some levity to your Friday.

The incident, according to DNA Info, went on for over six minutes. The video condenses the time line to show the highlights.

At some point CPD shows up to sort things out.

Here’s DNA Info’s blow by blow coverage of the altercation, “Shocking Video Shows Road Rage Battle on Chicago Street.

“The Driver’s Side” – News From The Motorist’s Perspective

HeadlinesBy Otto Mobile

Your transportation related headlines for Thursday, March 26, 2015

Rash of car burglaries in Chinatown (Chicago Sun Times)

Capitol Hill parking FAIL (Chicago Sun Times)

From the Quinn files – a secret study showing that the Illiana tollway would be a bust (Crain’s Chicago Business)