New meter deal not so sweet
Letters to the Editor June 6, 2013 6:04PM
A parking meter on the 3100 block of N. Broadway Ave. in Chicago, Ill., on Wednesday, December 26, 2012. | Andrew A. Nelles~Sun-Times Media
Updated: July 8, 2013 6:17AM
This “renegotiated” meter deal does nothing but further load payments onto the backs of people who use the meters. I use the meters often. I don’t remember disproportionately spending my share of the $1.15 billion dollars Mayor Daley took in from the meter “deal,” so why is it going to fall even further on to my back? And now, the only good thing to come out of this awful mess is free Sunday parking, and there are alderman saying they would opt out of even that because they want the parking turnover for local business.
You could easily achieve that same turnover effect if you made the parking rate 1 cent or 10 cents or a quarter an hour like it used to be. How about negotiating free holiday parking? Most businesses are closed on holidays; there would be no need for turnover. This is the worst deal since the Native Americans sold Manhattan and the changes don’t make lemonade out of a lemon, it just drops an even bigger lemon into the laps of the people being squeezed, the meter users.
Dave Atkins, Buena Park
Nurses are the backbone of our health-care system, yet our legal system doesn’t protect them against violenceas it does other professions. In 2004, 46 percent of assaults and violent acts against health-care practitioners that involved days off work were committed against registered nurses, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Any battery against police officers, emergency medical technicians, and school employees is a felony. Under current law, a battery against a nurse has a maximum penalty of one year in jail and a $2,500 fine. For other public employees the maximum is five years and a $25,000 fine. The Illinois Nurses Association set about to correct this disparity and, out of that effort, HB801, the Nurse Protection Bill, was born.Nurses deserve to be supported and empowered, not sabotaged through outdated attitudes and weak laws. HB 801, which passed the General Assembly,brings the penalty for battery against a nurse in line with other professions. We urge Gov. Quinn to sign it and send a message that violence against nurses is no longer tolerated.
Alice J. Johnson, Executive Director,
Illinois Nurses Association