Tag Archives: handicap parking
Someone decided to take matters into their own hands.
A parking vigilante seemingly got fed up with waiting months and months for the city to remove signs designating a reserved parking spot for a handicapped resident who had moved in April, and ripped the sign out of the ground according to CBS 2 News.
CBS 2 reports on the problem of reserved handicap parking spots on residential streets being abandoned and then unused for long periods of time. All the while drivers, especially in highly congested parts of the city, can’t find a parking space for their vehicle.
Sometimes a disabled person moves or dies, but the handicap parking space they were using sits there idle.
CBS 2 reports on why and how this happens and what is being done to alleviate these issues.
According to CBS 2 and the Sun-Times, alderman overwhelmingly supported Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s proposal to limit the number of parking spaces per block for drivers with handicapped license plates or disability placards.
There are some residential streets in the city where a disproportionate number of these reserved spaces exist, reducing the number of potential parking spots for other residents.
This change to the municipal code will limit this type of parking to no more than 20% of the total number of available parking spots per block.
If a disabled driver is denied a reserved spot due to this new rule, they do have the opportunity to appeal to Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities which can review and possible overturn the denial.
Just imagine it. The weather is beautiful, even balmy. Friends and family are tailgating, the grill is going, beer is flowing and everyone is excited about the Bears’ Monday night game at home against the Lions.
But then, Illinois Secretary of State law enforcement walk up and nail you for parking in a handicap parking spot.
But despite their best efforts, enforcement efforts by the Chicago Police Department don’t seem to be discouraging some drivers from misusing disabled parking placards according to the Sun-Times.
The newspaper reports since August 24th, the city has conducted enforcement investigations on 17 separate days. Police have stopped 234 drivers using disability parking placards and issued 47 violations when the driver was using another person’s placard to park for free at downtown parking meters.
The city has a lot of incentive to discourage this practice as it must compensate Chicago Parking Meters, LLC, the private firm which operates Chicago’s metered parking system, whenever disabled drivers park in metered spaces for free. So far, that bill for the past two years is over $35 million.
Disabled drivers, get your quarters ready.
Over 600,000 Illinois motorists with handicap plates or disability parking placards will say goodbye to free parking at metered parking spots starting in 2014.
Monday Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed into law sweeping changes to legislation controlling disabled parking statewide, but perhaps has the most impact in Chicago.
Part of the impetus for the legislation came from reports of wide spread abuse of disabled parking placards to park for free in Chicago’s very expensive metered parking spots first reported by the Chicago Sun-Times.
In addition, the City of Chicago began receiving multi-billion dollar bills from Chicago Parking Meters, LLC the company which has the 75 year concession to operate the meters. Per the contract signed with CPM in 2008, the city has to compensate the company for the massive number of drivers using disability placard and handicap plates to legally park without feeding the meter.
The vast majority of drivers with disabled placards and/or handicap plates will no longer be eligible for the free parking. Only drivers who cannot physically operate or access a parking meter will still be allowed to park without feeding the meter. Those drivers will be required to have their physician to sign a medical form in order to obtain the new placard or window decal to park at meters for free.
According to Chicago Parking Meters, LLC, a lot of disabled drivers are parking for free at metered parking spaces around the city. Millions of dollars worth.
CPM says it’s cost them $22 million in revenue in 2011 according to a story in today’s Chicago Tribune.
Per the parking meter lease agreement, approved by the vast majority of the Chicago City Council and signed by Mayor Daley in December of 2008, the meter company can bill the city when the number of drivers utilizing handicap license plates or disability parking placards exceeds a set percentage.
A week ago, CPM submitted their bill to the city for $22 million to compensate the company for disabled parkers just for 2011. The company invoiced the city $13 million for the same item in 2010.
Only Few Exceptions Will Still Be Allowed To Park Free
Illinois State Rep. Karen May (D-Highland Park) has introduced legislation to take away the free parking meter privileges for all but a minority of drivers with handicap license plates or disabled parking placards according to report in the Chicago Sun-Times.
The Illinois Secretary of State will issue a special free parking sticker to disabled drivers only after qualifying in at least one of four very strict and specific ways through doctor’s verification according to the proposed legislation.
View more videos at: http://nbcchicago.com.
A joint enforcement effort between Secretary of State Police and Chicago Police put many police officers on the ground at five separate locations around downtown Chicago Thursday looking for abuse of disabled parking laws according to the NBC Chicago website.
WTTW’s Paris Schutz puts together a nice nuts and bolts synopsis of Chicago Parking Meter, LLC’s recent $13.5 million bill for an overabundance of motorists utilizing handicap license plates and disabled placards to park for free in metered spots.