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Sunday, September 12, 2004

Department of Doo

From the Trib

The city code is specific about carriage operations. For example, rigs are not permitted on congested Rush Street between Chicago Avenue and Cedar Street between 6 p.m. on Fridays and 2 a.m. on Saturdays, or on busy Michigan Avenue between Wacker Drive and Oak Street between 9:30 a.m. and 7 p.m. on any day. They are banned from certain streets on the Near North Side altogether.

But [ Dr. Gerald] Weisberg contends violations are routine.

On that other issue, he took Natarus in June on a tour to inspect spots where what the alderman politely refers to as "doo" had been deposited.

A lively exchange of correspondence followed.

"To the extent that you seemingly pride yourself on being opinionated, condescending and at times outright rude, you scored high marks that day [and] I did appreciate your taking the time to see first-hand the problems of horse manure at the north end of the Magnificent Mile area," Weisberg wrote to the loquacious and sometimes caustic alderman. "Also appreciated was the fact that you saw to it that two high-ranking individuals from the Department of Streets and Sanitation and Loop Operations were also present."

Burt Natarus [of the 42nd ward ] wrote back,
"In these times of national security, I find it very difficult to obtain strict enforcement of horse carriage traffic laws. ... Nevertheless, in light of your sarcasm, we will try again. ... Keep writing me. I will do my very best."

"I think the biggest problem is not the horse doo," Natarus said in an interview last week. "The biggest problem is blocking traffic. And you would think the horse people would want to cooperate so there wouldn't be a movement to extinguish their operation."


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