Who can we thank for the new increases in 2012? First we will pay more to feed the parking meters then the toll roads with squeeze more out of us. It seems like the deals made by our brilliant politicians were with the Devil. Please, once again who can we thank for this?
What’s frustrating is that we are now paying for them trying to make a quick buck. And where is all that money now? It appears the billion made on one of the worst deals ever, has dried up. The State of Illinois and City of Chicago is still broke, so was it worth it? Not if you ask the residents of Illinois.
As soon as they announced the horrible meter deal, everyone knew this was coming. It’s just amazing that more protestor’s did not have huge demonstrations like the Occupy movement.
Well, just in time for the new year, beginning January 1st, we will pay about 17% more to park at meters and 50% or more to use the Illinois tolls. Great, just what we need….more money out-of-pocket after taking huge pay cuts or losing jobs.
So let’s start with the parking meters. Back in 2008 former Mayor Richard M. Daley’s signed a 75-year deal worth $1.16 Billion. And now we are stuck paying for his huge mistake. He signed off our rights to the meters in a deal which agreed to a series of annual hikes. Thanks a lot…the rise in meter rates comes just in time for your retirement. This bad deal will be in place long after Daley and most of us our gone.
The new parking rates for the central business district, which excludes the Loop, will be $3.50 an hour and neighborhood meters will increase to $1.75 per hour. This adds up to about a 17% increase which is close to the 15% increase in the loop. In the winter it may be best to take a bus because Loop meters from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. will cost $5.75 per hour. Good they did offer us one perk, the rate drops to $2.85 an hour between 9 p.m. and 8 a.m. Big deal…
But don’t get too cozy with this increase because in the beginning of 2013, meter rates will again rise a quarter to fifty cents an hour.
Now on to the Illinois tolls. They fooled us by offering a deal on I-Pass, saying we paid less. But if you notice, most tolls don’t even say what amount they are charging your sneaky little white box. And now we will still pay double anyway.
Come next week tolls will increase about 50% for I-Pass users and 87% for cash! Who does that? Have you ever received a 50% raise overnight? Doubtful! And they say it is being used to fund a big construction job…but where is all the money from the decades of us dishing it out? The roads are usually bumpy when riding through the lanes and fixing them was the original plan for the funds from the tolls.
Well, at least someone tried to fight the increase for the tolls…but they lost. Poor management has created a mess with the tolls and the meters and we are ending up paying for their incompetence. I don’t know about you, but this really pisses me off.
Why can’t they create plans for gradual increases like everything else? They sure know how to follow that plan when giving annual salary increases (to the lower-end worker’s).