Meigs: Chicago Pays $200K To Fight $33K Fine
"It may be time for the city to re-evaluate this strategy," Laurence Msall, president of the Civic Federation, a budget watchdog group, told Crain's Business News. The FAA levied the $33,000 fine against the city last October for failing to provide advance notice of its intent to close (that is, bulldoze) Meigs Field three years ago. The city has spent even more to fight FAA allegations that it misused $2.9 million in airport development funds, according to Crain's, and claims the fight is about more than money. The city has said that to simply pay the fine could damage its position in other continuing legal battles over Meigs. Friends of Meigs Field, an advocacy group, continues to lobby for bringing airplanes back to the site. The city's recent proposal to open a private heliport on public lakefront land shows the baselessness of the city's position that it needs a "no-fly zone" for security reasons, according to the group.