CHICAGO (CBS) — The Chicago City Council has approved higher taxes for most people who park in downtown lots, reports WBBM Political Editor Craig Dellimore.

The new percentage tax rate means that drivers with discounted parking like early bird rates will pay lower parking taxes and premium parking and expensive lots in hotels pay more than the current flat fee.

Hotel executives complain about the impact on guests but this week Alderman Jason Ervin asked a blunt question.

“Why is the parking so high to start with. I mean, I have seen rates $45 to $50, for overnight parking downtown. I mean you can get a room out at Midway for that kind of money,” said Ervin.

An industry spokesman blamed the parking lots and the companies that run them, not the hotels.

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