Chicago Boaters suffer thanks to Daley's Gas Taxes

Save Gas Chicago.jpg This is a picture of my daughter water skiing of the back of my Mastercraft boat named “Deep Water”. I purchase my gas in Wisconsin because of lower gas taxes. The Cook County and City of Chicago gas taxes really add up. Whenever possible, make sure you fill your tank up in Indiana or outside of Cook County. I am also lucky to have three young sons that paddle like crazy to reduce fuel consumption. I see a depression heading towards Chicago, so save your money. Click below on the Boating Story from the Chicago Sun-Times. Photo by Patrick McDonough.]]>In dock, or in hock
YACHTS STAY ANCHORED | Boaters with gas pains try dinghies, cut trips
BY MITCH DUDEK Staff Reporter/[email protected]
There's Big Cuban Pete and Little Cuban Pete, and they both float in Belmont Harbor.
But the six horses that power Little Cuban Pete, a dinghy, consume a fraction of the gas it takes to feed the 360 horses on its 25-foot counterpart. So for Pete Zamora (you can probably guess his heritage), it's cruise in the dinghy and party on the bigger boat.
"A lot more guys are using their dinghies," he said.
"I cringe when I fill up my boat," said Zamora, a Norwood Park native who pays about $600 to top off — nearly $200 more than he paid last year. "If these boats go out, most go as far as Navy Pier, that's it — unless they have a sail."
Despite slips being at a premium at Chicago's nine harbors, gas sales have dropped about 15 percent this year. This week, gas cost $5.19 a gallon at Belmont Harbor. A year ago, it cost about $4.40, said Scott Stevenson, who manages the harbors.
Gas costs have made using auxiliary crafts a trend.
"It's pretty typical. Many of our boaters have Jet Skis or dinghies they keep with their bigger boats . . . even though gas is expensive, boaters are finding ways to make the best of it," said Stevenson.
Going slower and slashing long trips in favor of dropping anchor close to home are other ways boaters are conserving fuel.
Some rarely leave the dock. "They come down and use their boats kind of like a summer cottage," Stevenson said.
The average boater uses his boat about 33 days a year — a number that has remained constant — said Thom Dammrich, president of the National Marine Manufacturers Association. New powerboat sales are down 16 percent, he added.
Chicago's charter fishermen are hurting, too. "My business is down about 50 percent," said Allen Skalecke, who runs Captain Al's, one of a handful of charter fishing operations in the city. His costs are 20 percent higher than last year because of gas, resulting in a fuel surcharge. "I'm just bumping along, hoping next year might be different," he said.
Wendella Boats, which offers river architecture and lake tours, has mostly avoided price increases to stay competitive. But gas costs bite into the bottom line.
One bright spot on the water is Chicago Water Taxi, also owned by Wendella.
Business is up 70 percent over the last two years as public transportation has become more popular, company spokesman Gregg Pupecki said.

7 Replies to “Chicago Boaters suffer thanks to Daley's Gas Taxes”

  1. Pat, your correct. The depression is hitting Chicago. This depression is all across the United States, its only being controlled and managed in Washington this time. The real estate market in Chicago is late to experience the price drops which have been seen all across our country. The question I yet to see is when are real estate taxes going down because property values are dropping now by as high as 25% in this city. The press needs to follow up on this and it is hoped that they will. Unfortunately the press at the moment is busy drinking Barack Obama’s cool aid. It’s interesting that a man as bright as Wies (our police supt.) was not smart enough to acknowledge the facts that this bad economy, high food and gas prices along with our mayors tax the poor strategy have helped brew the perfect storm of inequity and anger among the poor people in our community. That’s why we are seeing so much violence. Our leaders are so blind to treating the problems that exist. They ignore the facts so that they can continue doing what they want to do which is enrich themselves and spend our money on trying to have all these shrines erected in our city so when they die they can have something to be remembered by. All at a high cost to us.

  2. I’m doing this for you Pat McDonough. Stop drinking, your hurting your liver and your children. Driving your boat while drunk is just plain stuopid!

    (Response) Please use spell check for the millionth time.

  3. “They ignore the facts so that they can continue doing what they want to do which is enrich themselves and spend our money on trying to have all these shrines erected in our city so when they die they can have something to be remembered by. All at a high cost to us.”

    Oh, they’ll be remembered, Tom, they’ll be remembered.

    Just not the way they’d like to be remembered.

    As for some insight into the reasons for “….the perfect storm of inequity and anger among the poor people in our community. That’s why we are seeing so much violence.”, visit:

    http://secondcitycop.blogspot.com/

    and spend some time reading not only the articles, but the comments to same.

    If you think Pattyboy understands the shit that goes on in this city and county’s governments, you’ll be pleased to see just how much more our cops know.

    And what they’re ‘doing’ about it.

  4. It makes me sad to know that buying gas for your boat to use at your second home is expensive. How do you make ends meet?

  5. Pat,

    Is this the house you lived at outside the city limits? $80,000 Boat, must be nice to spend all the whisle blower money on fighting corruption.

    How many of your caulker buddies are going to be laid off next year? You can bet your ass that the real Licensed Plumbers who served aprenticeships will make sure they are the last to go.

  6. Most of the Calkers were laborers and learned the work over a period of years. The Plumbers come to the water department and don’t know an F’en thing about water department work. They had to learn the work over a period of time. Now, of all the things that you learned serving your aprenticeship, what more do you know of water department work than the Calker?? Correct answer is NOTHING!!

  7. North District,

    What i do know is that the collective bargaining agreement between the Union and the City, prohibits “caulkers” from doing the work of a licensed plumber. The water supply is the work of a plumber. Caulkers may have learned to do the job over the years; but just because I can take an antibiotic for swollen glands does not make me a doctor. Caulkers were always given to political people, it is a political title that is defined as: city laborer that needed a way to make more money and avoid layoffs. Plumber is defined as: a person who installs and repairs piping, fixtures, appliances, and appurtenances in connection with the water supply, drainage systems, etc., both in and out of buildings.

    Get your resume together, i am sure there is a huge desire to hire former city caulkers. Good luck and let us know how it works out.

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