Mar 232014
 

Most Naperville residents and businesses have no idea what’s about to hit them. Naperville city officials are on the verge of ‘sucker punching’ the entire city with a huge electric rate increase. This comes after Naperville city manager Doug Krieger and Naperville Public Utilities Director of Electric, Mark Curran, time and again reassured Naperville residents and businesses that things were under control with electric rates, everything was O.K, and would remain that way with zero or 2% rate increases over a five-year period. Additionally, because of a long-term contract that city officials approved in 2007 until the year 2035, Naperville residents and business would benefit enormously regarding electric rates.

As it turns out, this was nothing but smoke and mirrors, and nothing could be further from the truth. The city is $25 million in the hole and not willing to throw away the shovel. Naperville city manager’s answer is to sky-rocket the rates and ask everybody including businesses to use electric during off-peak times. That’s the extent of his creativity to addressing the problem. The City of Naperville is one of the ten largest employers in Naperville, yet nothing but silence on how the city plans to use their electric usage during off peak hours.

Unfortunately when city officials don’t exhibit strong leadership with critical thinking, demonstrating accountability and courage, communicating effectively, and managing performance, it reflects on all city officials which is unfair to those trying to do the right thing including councilmen Krause and Fieseler.

Watch and listen councilman Doug Krause as he expresses his concerns

Now watch and listen to Naperville councilman Bob Fieseler as he “tells it like it is” and is the only council member to present a ‘solution’ to ease the pain for residents and businesses. It’s a lengthy video clip, and well worth the time. Also note at the end of the clip, after Fieseler so accurately ‘nails’ it, the dead silence from the rest of the council. They’re either too embarrassed to respond, or more likely, they know he is absolutely correct and clearly understands the situation.

There is one person who is the common denominator of involvement for each mis-step in this total fiasco, and that person is Naperville councilman Grant Wehrli. He was on the council in 2007 when this terrible decision was made to contract with IMEA (Illinois Municipal Electric Agency) until the year 2035. Wehrli was there when the city did a money grab with the Federal Department of Energy for the smart grid. Wehrli was there when over 4,000 residents signed a petition, and were denied a vote for a non-binding referendum against the forced installation of Smart Meters. Wehrli was there when residents including two moms were handcuffed and arrested for protecting their homes and families from the forced meter installation. Wehrli was there as a point-person between the council, Krieger, Curran, and IMEA.

And what did Wehrli have to say during this council meeting? Watch and listen.

If you want to ask Wehrli about any of this, chances are he will want to adjourn the conversation.

  2 Responses to “City Council Hammering Naperville With Electric Rates”

  1. Where was the PUAB, which is appointed, not elected, a year ago when the electric utility cash flow was going south? Maybe was it because the present Board Chairman, John Krummen was too busy being a “smart gid ambassador” or on the Homeowners Confederation Board or running for office? The bigger problem is not the IMEA contract, but the lack of over site by the Council. How can Krieger and Curran not have known that the rate study was wrong? Until there is genuine discussion and variety on the Council, the PUAB, the Chamber of Commence, and all the appointed Boards and committees Naperville will continue down this path of financial hardship. School District 203 just annouced an average of $208.00/household tax increase. Add on to the unfunded pensions, huge water rate increases, electric rates skyrocketing, the never ending lavish spending by the park Distict, double (or is it triple?) dipping of pensions and the borrowing; taxpayers are beginning to feel the heat. Only the wealthy will be able to live here, and enjoy electricity when they need it. The retired, young families, the disabled will have to go elsewhere. How about an apology to those two young Moms who were arrested for protecting their property? How about an apology to all those brave citizens who were treated so viciously by some Council members when they were speaking out?

  2. @Buck Naper – Don’t hold your breath – the only thing they will ever admit is that SOMEONE ELSE made a mistake. They continue to blame problems on previous city council’s, previous department managers, bad decisions by other people, etc. yet they appoint the incompetent to new positions, with increased salaries and use tax payer money to defend them (the police chief is a great example) or hire them as well paid consultants.

    Where was Fiesler’s outrage when they voted to borrow money for the “Green Fuel Depot”, to purchase and install smart meters, or install additional car charging stations. HA! He backed ALL of those.

    This was brought to their attention over two years ago-The electric dept. was running in the red. Citizens were told it was “government” accounting, which isn’t the same as “regular” accounting. They said “regular” people don’t really understand how government accounting works. Government Accounting Doesn’t work!

    Perhaps Mr. Krieger thought he would be gone or promoted to a new position by now and would not have to answer for the lies he told two years ago. The line up keeps getting smaller – Asst city manager- GONE, no wait, he was appointed to a cushy police chief job with a salary and a pension and earning towards an additional pension. Head of Electric/Utilities Dept. – GONE (well not completely, he did get a 12 month smart meter consulting contract for 60k). Police Chief – GONE- No, he also got a consulting job from the city to transition in the previous asst. city manager now appointed police chief. City attorney –GONE – only time will tell if she’s really gone. Head of Finance dept. – GONE as of March 31st. Community relations Manager – GONE, with a severance package and a non disclosure agreement, teaching yoga now.

    One consistent through ALL of this is the Mayor, Retired Police Officer, Head of the liquor commission, and on the Illinois Tollway Commission, etc – Maybe he’s too busy with all his other responsibilities to pay attention, maybe he’s asleep at the wheel, or just incompetent, whatever the case, he’s been there for all of the votes and has never said a word about it.

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