The next Naperville city council has their work cut out for them. The departing city council ‘took the night off’ at last Tuesday’s city council meeting, by sitting back, letting things unravel, and kicking the proverbial can down the road.
The “can” being the topic of whether or not to adopt a resolution to support local government empowerment and reform legislation in the State legislature.
Decisiveness and courage have never been a strong points of the council and they proved it again at Mayor Pradel’s final appearance as the holder of the gavel. In fact with constant bursts of intimidation (applause) by the overflow crowd, not once was the gavel used to bring things back to order.
City council meetings have rules including:
- Speakers are allowed three minutes to make their point. This rule was not adhered to.
- Applause (bursts of approval or disapproval) are considered forms of intimidation, and not allowed. But it was allowed this time over and over and over again until it began to sound like an Academy Awards Ceremony.
- The total time allowed for all speakers is limited to 30 minutes, but the council sat on their hands and allowed it to continue for closer to two hours than one hour.
The bottom line to the meeting was the Naperville city council was intimidated into doing nothing. They allowed an overflow crowd of 600+ to control that segment of the meeting, and when all was said and done, nothing was accomplished.
There may be 60,000 voters in Naperville in favor of Governor Rauner’s attempt to save the State of Illinois, but council members could only see as far as the group of 600+ in front of them.
Whether or not you’re in favor of the union’s side of the issue, or the Governor’s side will be decided in one way or another; the ship (State of Illinois) either sinks or floats.
What is rather appalling at this council’s last meeting is the double standards and double-speak they subscribe to.
When a very well-behaved group of Naperville residents (Naperville Smart Meter Awareness group) tried over and over again to stop city official’s forced installation of Smart Meters and used the public forum at city council meetings to address the same council, the council:
- would not allow speakers to speak over three minutes. In fact, often times speakers we’re required, at the last minute, to reduce their planned and practiced 3-minute presentation, to one or two minutes.
- would not allow anyone to show support with applause, or risk being forcefully removed by police from the council chambers.
What should have been a ‘Champagne and cookies’ night for this council’s last meeting, turned out to be a total waste of time. The topic should have never been on the agenda. It wasn’t fair to the next city council, it wasn’t fair to the residents, and it wasn’t fair to either side of the issue.
What was the purpose? What in the world were they thinking?