Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson’s motorcade racks up moving violations

Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson’s motorcade racks up moving violations

Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson’s drivers accumulated 14 traffic tickets for speeding or running red lights – with 12 still unpaid – totaling $1,640.

Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson’s drivers have racked up a lot of tickets, including 14 moving violations for speeding or running red lights.

Since Johnson’s inauguration in May 2023, his motorcade has accumulated eight speeding tickets and six red-light tickets. Only two have been paid, and there’s still $1,640 due on the remaining 12 citations, according to Freedom of Information Act requests to the Chicago Department of Finance.

On Sept. 25, Johnson’s drivers got two tickets within two minutes, one for going more than 11 miles-per-hour over the speed limit and another for running a red light at 3200 N. Central Ave. Neither have been paid.

Johnson has more moving violations in less than a year as mayor than formers mayors Lori Lightfoot and Rahm Emanuel accumulated in their respective four-year terms, according to CWB Chicago. They counted 21 total tickets and a warning as of Dec. 20, plus city seizure orders for two of his four vehicles for failing to pay tickets.

Johnson and the city still expect you to pay your tickets. Chicago’s 2024 budget depends on $348 million from fines and fees such as speeding tickets. When introducing the budget, Johnson said fines fall hardest on low-income families.

“[A] $95 city sticker or a $100 parking ticket weighs more heavily on the family that earns $30,000 a year versus a family that earns $150,000 a year,” Johnson said, adding the city “relied too long on a tax structure that heavily burdens our lowest income residents, and is too reliant on property taxes, fees and fines and rates.”

Before becoming mayor, Johnson told the Chicago Sun-Times in a candidate questionnaire that “Lowering the speed limit is a cash grab, and has not proven effective in making our streets any safer.”

Five of Johnson’s tickets were because of the 6-10 mile-per-hour over the speed limit threshold instituted by former Mayor Lori Lightfoot. When former mayor Emanuel’s motorcade accumulated a bevy of red light and speeding tickets, he paid them himself.

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