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Ald. Santiago Apologizes For Complaining About Loss Of Cubs Ticket Perk

By Heather Cherone | October 28, 2016 9:51pm | Updated on October 31, 2016 7:25am
 Ald. Milly Santiago (31st) apologized for complaining about the loss of the perk.
Ald. Milly Santiago (31st) apologized for complaining about the loss of the perk.
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DNAinfo/Ted Cox

LOGAN SQUARE — Ald. Milly Santiago (31st) apologized late Friday for complaining about the new rule that bans aldermen from taking advantage of an offer from the Chicago Cubs to buy postseason tickets at face value.

Santiago, who represents Belmont Cragin, Portage Park, Hermosa and Logan Square, told city watchdog Joseph Ferguson during a City Council budget hearing Wednesday that the ban was "insulting, humiliating, embarrassing."

A self-described "hardcore" Cubs fan, Santiago said she could not afford to pay $1,000 for a ticket to a playoff game.

"I'm a poor alderman," Santiago said.

Hear Heather Cherone talk about Ald. Santiago's mea culpa.

Santiago was one of several aldermen who eagerly took advantage of the offer from the Cubs to buy face-value tickets. However, city ethics officials ruled Oct. 21 that the offer from the Cubs constitutes a "prohibited gift" under the city's ethics rules because the tickets are available to the public at a much higher price.

After being besieged with complaints on social media, Santiago sent an email message to 31st Ward residents late Friday, acknowledging that she "disappointed" many people with her remarks.

"Like many of you, I’ve waited many years to see our beloved Cubs make it this far," Santiago wrote. "In that excitement, I said things that were rude and unfair to the hard-working people in our community. I extend my deepest apologies."

Elected in 2015, Santiago makes $116,208 per year and is allowed to hold outside employment.

Chicago officials are banned from accepting gifts worth more than $50. Violations can trigger fines ranging from $1,000 to $5,000.

While Santiago wasn't the only alderman to complain about the ban, her remarks became the flashpoint in a debate over the rule that flared as the Cubs battle the Cleveland Indians in the World Series.

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