I wasn't sure which forum this best went into but it sure seemed a story worth talking about, so move as necessary if my choice wasn't the best
Fare warning: It's going to cost more to commute, park in Chicago
Beginning Jan. 1, drivers will be shelling out more for parking meters in downtown Chicago than any other city in North America.
The cost to park at a metered spot in the Loop will rise to $6.50 an hour from the current $5.75. That’s more than double what people paid to park
at meters in the Loop in 2008.
I've never lived in a city that soaked it's residents for the privilege to park a vehicle. I've certainly never worked in one where that cost had to
be directly laid next to the wage being made to determine what's left afterward.
The increase is part of the city of Chicago’s $1.15 billion deal with Chicago Parking Meters LLC. Beginning in 2014, meter increases citywide
will be tied to the rate of inflation.
I got to thinking about this as I looked over the story and it hit me almost immediately. WAIT a second here...if it takes $6.50 an hour just to park
... I wonder ... What is minimum wage in the same city charging this?
Source - U.S. Min. Wage Info
The Illinois Minimum Wage is $8.25 per hour. The Illinois Minimum Wage is greater than the National Minimum Wage of $7.25 per hour, so employees
in Illinois are entitled to the higher minimum wage of $8.25.
This is rather absurd. In parking alone then, if someone were stuck having to park there for a job at Subway or Burger King or whatever they may be
inside the Chicago loop to work at, below professional job level ... They keep $1.75 an hour after parking. However, it took toll roads to even get
there if they came from almost any direction.
Illinois Tollway System Map
There are other tolls that doesn't so obviously highlight if someone is coming from the East, such as the Indiana Toll road and Chicago Skyway for the
Indiana -> Chicago approach, which the article indicates tolls are also rising for from $3.50 to $4.00. (We won't touch what they rob a big Truck for
in driving that short stretch)
This comes out of the $1.75 an hour left after parking of course, and all gone from a person's daily pay total before a burger is purchased for lunch
or a drop of gas is paid to make the trip in the first place.
It isn't the idea of higher minimum wage I would advocate for. That's patently ridiculous. As many note in more formal ways than my own opinion, costs
of living tend to rise appropriate to a new min. wage to effectively negate the benefits and too often in an almost immediate cause and effect way,
The problem, as I'd see it, would be the collective and overall impact of 'death by a thousand fines, fees and tolls' living in a modern city seems to
consist of. In Chicago, it's worse than most as I came to know and hate in a long trucking career that had me in and out of Chicago regularly for most
of my life. These kinds of little charges are still adding to a collective slam on a normal person where I can't help but sympathize with people
sometimes who just throw their hands up and say 'What's the point of trying??'.
After all.....by the time you've driven there, paid the tolls and gas and then parked? I figure you might be making a whole $.75 an hour! for whatever
job brought you there if it isn't a job paying comfortably above that min. Don't spent all that at once now!
Can this be sustained for any long term into the future? Thoughts?
edit on 1-1-2013 by Wrabbit2000 because: (no reason given)