The freak winter storm that hit Chicago and snowed out the Cubs home opener on Monday had a silver lining for some drivers who forgot about another rite of spring — street sweeping.
The steadily falling snow meant that the Streets and Sanitation Department canceled plans to sweep debris residential streets in each of the city’s 50 wards, said spokeswoman Marjani Williams.
But no one told the ticket writers working for the Chicago Police Department and the Department of Finance. So 1,000 cars left parked in the areas that had been set for street-sweeping were hit with the dreaded orange envelopes, containing $60 fines, Williams said.
Those tickets — amounting to roughly $60,000 — will be waived, Williams said.
“Any motorist that received a street sweeping violation dated April 9 should disregard the street sweeping violation only,” Williams said in a statement. “Further, the Department of Finance will send written correspondence to those motorists we have updated mailing addresses for, verifying that their street sweeping violation dated April 9 has been voided.”
The tickets drew the ire of Ald. Raymond Lopez (15th), who said on Twitter that all tickets issued during the street sweeping enforcement — such as citations for failing to have a city sticker — should be voided.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel recently unveiled an online tool to allow residents to track the sweepers — and stay one step ahead of the ticket writers.