Chicago trying to get paid for a 20 year old parking ticket

The city of Chicago's quest to collect on old, unpaid parking tickets is getting some national attention.

But it's not the flattering kind.

A former Chicagoan and former Saturday Night Live star set off a Twitterstorm Thursday when she posted a picture of the city's attempt to get paid for a 20 year old parking ticket.

She’s famous for playing Debbie Downer on Saturday Night Live, but comedian and writer Rachel Dratch is now dealing with a real-life downer -- an unpaid Chicago parking ticket that's nearly old enough to drink.

Dratch posted a picture of a collection notice on her Twitter feed, writing: "Chicago does not F around. I received this parking ticket in the mail today. It's from 20 years ago."

The collection notice for $73.20 comes from a law firm hired by the city of Chicago for a parking ticket originally written in December of 1997.

According to the ticket, Dratch was parked in the 150 block of West North Avenue, which is just around the corner from the Second City where Dratch was a performer with the mainstage group from 1995 to 1998.

It’s no secret the city of Chicago is swimming in red ink, and Mayor Rahm Emanuel has been pushing to find fresh cash in old tickets.

In a statement, a spokesperson for the city says they send at least five separate notices to motorists regarding tickets before turning it over to a collection agency: "(then) it can be re-referred to a separate collection agency to work to identify new or updated mailing information. We followed the same process in this instance."

How much money is out there in unpaid parking and speeding tickets? A 2015 story by DNAinfo estimates the potential windfall at $1.5 billion dollars.

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