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 »

 

Illinois Senate Passes Veto Override Of 70 MPH Bill

70 MPH signOn Thursday in Springfield, the Illinois State Senate overwhelmingly 44-5-1 to override Governor Pat Quinn’s veto of a bill that will raise the speed limit on Illinois Tollways to 70 mph.

The bill’s sponsor, Sen. Jim Oberweis (R-Sugar Grove), has been trying to raise the speed limit on Illinois expressways for the past two years with some success.

“The Governor is fond of saying ‘Let the will of the people be the law of the land,’ yet he was quick to veto legislation that was sponsored by 36 Senators representing Chicago, suburban and downstate areas of Illinois,” Oberweis said Thursday. “And today, a majority of my colleagues in the Senate joined me in overriding the Governor’s veto.”

A bill signed by Quinn in 2013 was supposed to increase the speed limit on all expressways–including the tollway and Chicago area expressways–at least according to Oberweis who authored the bill.

Illinois Supreme Court Fails To Come To Concensus On Red Light Camera Lawsuit, Results In Dismissal

A legal challenge to Chicago’s red light cameras was dismissed Thursday by the Illinois Supreme Court — a result that came about after two judges recused themselves and the remaining four were split on the matter.

“In this case, two Justices of this Court have recused themselves and the remaining members of the Court are divided so that it is not possible to secure the constitutionally required concurrence of four judges for a decision,” the short decision states. “Accordingly, the appeal is dismissed. The effect of this dismissal is the same as an affirmance by an equally divided court of the decision under review but is of no precedential value.”

The class action lawsuit argued that all Chicago red light tickets issued between 2003 and 2006, before a state law was passed to allow red light camera enforcement in eight counties — Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, Madison, Will, McHenry and St. Clair — were invalid.

The lawsuit also contended every red light camera ticket issued in the city beyond 2006 is invalid because Chicago never drafted a new ordinance after the state enacted its red light camera law in 2006.

The city has always argued it had the right to establish the program under home rule authority.

Read more at DNA Info.

Illinois Supreme Court Poised To Rule On Chicago’s Red Light Camera Lawsuit Thursday

red_light_cameraAfter more than six months of waiting, the Illinois Supreme Court will rule on whether a class action lawsuit against Chicago’s red light camera program can continue on it’s long legal road.

Tuesday the court’s website announced a ruling on the case will be issued Thursday morning.

The court heard oral arguments on Keating v. City of Chicago this past May at the historic Ottawa Courthouse.

Attorney Patrick Keating filed the class action suit in 2010 in Cook County Circuit Court but it got dismissed. This ruling was upheld by the Appellate Court in 2013 and then promptly appealed to the Illinois Supreme Court.

Ticket Geek Joins Nick D On WGN 720 Radio Saturday Night

Nick D. on the air

Nick D. behind the microphone at WGN Radio.

What are you doing Saturday night?

Dinner? Movie? Hot date? Going out for a drink?

How about tuning into WGN Radio 720 AM and listening to that goof the Parking Ticket Geek ramble on about parking and driving issues in Chicago.

Sounds thrilling, right?

Luckily for listeners, the Geek will be on with the always entertaining and hilarious Nick Digilio at 8:30 PM.

Tune into WGM Radio 720 AM or stream it live here.

Musician Tours All 50 States One Parking Meter At A Time

Pablo Picker plays in the back of his pickup.

Pablo Picker plays in the back of his pickup.

The first thing Pablo Picker does after parking his pickup truck is to feed the meter.

Picker is a Boston based musician who’s taking his music to the streets–literally–playing music from the back of his truck sitting at parking meters in all 50 states.

This day he sits barefoot in the back of a pickup truck parked on Milwaukee Avenue in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood, playing guitar and singing to a constantly changing audience of hipsters, commuters, parents and children walking by.

Picker had been playing in public for years, mainly in Boston’s Harvard Square where he saw many street musicians getting hassled by police for not having a permit. While Picker was smart enough to get his own busker license, he’s always been uncomfortable with the idea that musicians couldn’t just entertain people in public without the formality of a license.

So after recording a new album, he got the urge to get back on the street to share his music, and decided do a tour playing in public in all 50 states. But he was concerned about the possibility of getting on the wrong side of local law enforcement.

So he came up with a brilliant solution–parking meters.

City Tows 11 Tow Trucks In Investigation Of Illegal Seizures

The entrance to the heavily barricaded tow yard for Rendered Services 3601 S. Iron St. Photo credit: Casey Cora/DNA Info.

The entrance to the heavily barricaded tow yard for Rendered Services 3601 S. Iron St. Photo credit: Casey Cora/DNA Info.

A privately operated tow truck towed a car off a city street and now faces an investigation according to CBS 2.

The story starts on the far south side outside the Pullman Porter Museum, where a driver allegedly parked in a tow zone.

A manager for the museum claims her car was in a spot reserved for buses and called Rendered Services to remove the car.

The driver had to pay $216 to get her vehicle released.

The problem is, private tow companies cannot tow off the public way.

Sec. Of State Computers Crash At All Motor Vehicle Facilities

Driver's  licenseIt must have seemed liked the line that would never end–in fact it stretched across the entire state of Illinois.

That’s because the computer system used by all 138 Illinois Secretary of State motor vehicle facilities were down all day Wednesday.

Facility computers went down early Wednesday morning, essentially incapacitating all 138 locations and preventing drivers from getting or renewing driver’s licenses or vehicle license plates.

According to WBBM Radio 780 AM, some people waited for hours hoping the computers would finally come back online.

Parking Enforcement Aide Suspended For ‘Discourteous’ E-Mail

gaggle-of-pea2

A group of Parking Enforcement Aides get some training and instruction in Lakeview.

A dust up between members of the Chicago Police Department and a pair of city Parking Enforcement Aides resulted in a suspension for one PEA according to according to a recent report from the Office of the Inspector General.

The more recent IG report says a PEA received a 29-day suspension for sending an e-mail to a CPD District office threatening retaliation in the form of parking tickets issued to the personal vehicles of police officers.

Study: Millenials Driving Less Than Previous Generations

Toy CarMillennials don’t like to drive.

That’s at least what a study by the Illinois Public Interest Research Group says.

The report, entitled Millennials in Motion says data shows miles driven each year by all Americans has been declining for the past decade. But the decrease is much more pronounced for 16-34 year olds where its dropped by 23% between 2001 and 2009.

PIRG says Millennials (people born between 1983 and 2000) are biking, walking and taking public transportation more often than older generations of commuters.

Comedy Video Pokes Fun At Chicago Parking Tickets

Here’s a little comedic relief for Chicago drivers and the constant onslaught of parking tickets they face every year–about 2.5 million annually.

This short is courtesy of the fine people at the Chicago Comedy Film Festival.