The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

City Looks for Extension on Midway Privatization

By Chuck Sudo in News on Dec 1, 2010 3:40PM

Image via
You would think that, after the shit storm that rained on Mayor Daley's head once the details of the parking meter privatization came out, he'd give up the privatizing ghost and count down the days until next May.

Think again. This is Daley, as bullheaded a politician as they come with the memory of an elephant. The city has asked the Federal Aviation Administration for an extension on trying to privatize Midway Airport. By most accounts, the deal is currently DOA, but the city filed the extension to give the new mayor and City Council an opportunity to move forward with privatizing the "world's busiest square mile."

Last year a deal was in place for a 99-year, $2.5 billion lease for Midway to a group headed by Citigroup, Inc. But the group was unable to obtain financing. If the city Inspector General thought the parking meter lease was undervalued, wait until his office had a chance to examine the Midway deal, if it went through. Most of the major mayoral candidates, realizing the word "privatization" is as much anathema to their campaigns as a pledge to raise taxes, have said they would not support privatizing Midway.