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Chicago Alderman Immune From Parking Space Prosecution

A handicapped man’s suit against the City of Chicago fell in federal court after a judge there ruled that his alderman is protected by legislative immunity from charges that he blocked a request for a designated parking space out of malice. Boris Gudowich filed a civil right suit against the City of Chicago after his alderman, Harry Osterman, neglected to push for the council approval that’s needed when new spots are created. He claimed violations of due process and of the Americans With Disabilities Act.

Gudowich was told his request for a space near his North Side home was denied because the street in the 48th Ward already has a full allotment of restricted parking. After a neighbor’s request was granted, he approched Osterman’s office but got little help from the alderman’s staff. District Judge Thomas Durkin cited case law in saying the Osterman’s actions were not attributable to the city. He said that further discovery is needed to assess the validity of the claim under the ADA, which offers federal relief from discrimation by state and local officials in the dissemination of government services.