Parking meters vandalized in Chicago

June 5, 2009 at 10:45 AM
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CHICAGO, June 5 (UPI) -- The decision to turn over Chicago parking meters to a private company has led to a wave of meter vandalism in two North Side neighborhoods, Chicago police say.

Some 50 coin-fed meters in Uptown and Ravenswood had globs of goo or putty smeared all over them or left to dry in their coins slots, the Chicago Tribune reported Friday.

The vandals also wrote the words "slave" and "kill cops" in black marker on a few of the meter's display windows and covered other display windows in silver spray paint.

Earlier this year Chicago leased all its parking meters to a private company, Chicago Parking Meters LLC, that increased prices and installed faulty pay-and-display parking machines.

There was also a flood of complaints about non-working and incorrectly marked parking meters.

Manager Syed Ali, who runs a supermarket on North Sheridan Road, told the Tribune faulty meters are hurting his business.

"They cannot park, so they come in a hurry," said Ali. "They're all very angry."

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