Crain's Chicago Business reports that the city of Chicago is fighting the Federal Emergency Management Agency over a nearly $6-million tab for snow removal. Said the publication:
In a complaint filed in federal court, the city claims it had a right to use a total of $5.9 million in federal disaster funds to clear snow from O’Hare International Airport and Midway Airport in 1999 and 2000. FEMA disagrees, the complaint said, and has tried for the past three years to recover the $4.79 million given to Chicago for a severe storm in January 1999 and another $1 million for a December 2000 snowstorm.
FEMA obviously doesn't remember how hard it was for the Federal Aviation Administration to collect several million in fines from Chicago after Mayor Richard M. Daley one midnight bulldozed the federally subsidized, lakefront airport known as Miegs Field.
FEMA contends that airlines operating at O’Hare and Midway are responsible for paying for snow removal and that federal disaster funds should not have been spent on it, according to the suit.
This all is in character for Daley, who wants taxpayers to cough up millions for costs the airlines at O'Hare rightfully should be covering. Except that the 1999 and 2000 snowjobs amount to but a tiny slice of the billions that the airlines should be paying for the expansion of O'Hare Airport. Instead, Daley is pushing the costs on to the taxpayer, through such things as the passenger seat tax.
Some things never change.
Here is Crain's complete story (subscription required):
FEMA wants blizzard money back | Crain's