Jan 192017
 

Naperville’s local newspaper (Naperville Sun), also known as Naperville’s 10th council person, ran an editorial in last Sunday’s January 15 edition, “Talk of merging towns is just silly” in which it outlined reasons why a possible referendum to annex three cities (Lisle, Warrenville, and Woodridge) into Naperville was a ‘silly idea’.

Maybe it is a silly idea, but considering the newspaper is simply an extension of the city council (hence the 10th member), Watchdog considered it appropriate to respond to each point.

  • “The plan would be expensive, time-consuming and more complicated than anyone understands. Merging…might take years”.

Considering the speed at which government works, it could take some time, but if the effort was made at ‘Trump-speed’ it wouldn’t that long, and the benefits would be worth it.

  • “The move also would mean the residents of the assimilated towns suddenly would have representatives whom they don’t know and didn’t choose”.

Basically that’s what we have now. Considering Naperville city officials overturned a landslide vote for district representation a few years ago, most residents today couldn’t name one council member.

  • “It would burden Naperville’s City Council with an additional 70,000 people whose interests they don’t fully understand and who may have chosen their original town precisely because they did not want to live in Naperville”.

The last thing we want to do is “burden” council members with an occasional additional phone call or email from another resident. If there is one thing that most Naperville council members have, it’s time on their hands. If you doubt that, tune in to a council meeting and listen to the endless talking about topics in which they agree. And according to Naperville city officials, who wouldn’t want to live in Naperville. Additionally, Naperville has a city clerk who is actually attending council meetings rather than doing time in the Graybar Hotel.

  • “We doubt there would be a savings in city personnel. Larger cities require more people to run them, not fewer”.

Reducing the number of mayors from four to one, and council members from 28 t0 8, is a good start.

  • “Calling a Warrenville a Naperville, does not make it a Naperville”

This reminds me of Naperville councilwoman Brodhead’s comment about “chickens don’t bark”, what does this have to do with the price of cheese in China. Does anyone beyond a 50 mile radius of Warrenville, even know where Warrenville is?

  • “A merger also would create more of the dissatisfaction that happens when people find themselves removed from the center of their city and its activities.”

Naperville is 35 miles from Chicago, and that doesn’t stop us from going to the lakefront or a Cubs game. That’s the beauty of transportation.

  • “it’s wrong that such an action does not require the consent of the voters of the city into which the others are being assimilated”.

Try telling that to Obama’s Department of Justice. What the mayors see as ‘wrong’ is the fact that citizens and residents could control what city officials can’t, and that’s the outcome of the vote on the referendum.

  • “Whether voters in Lisle, Woodridge, and Warrenville would ever approve the merger is an unknown”.

That’s the purpose of the referendum, to find out if they would approve it.

  • “We know from experience that unpredictable things can occur when choices intended merely to be protests or statements of dissatisfaction appear on the ballot”.

The key word there is ‘unpredictable’, which is exactly what city officials from all four cities don’t want. If government officials are in control, it’s predictable; when residents have control, government officials begin sweating profusely.

It’s doubtful that this referendum for annexation (government consolidation) will ever see the light of day on the ballot. Government officials with a little help from the court can make that predictable.

  12 Responses to “Watchdog Responds To Naperville’s 10th Council Person”

  1. There is not enough information about how such a merger would be implemented, condition of infrastructure in these cities, debt service obligations, employee contracts (senior employees usually have contracts that can be expensive to buy out, most city employees are represented by unions and contracts that restrict terminations / set severance pay / require continued healthcare coverage / etc). Without having any idea what impacts these and other factors would have on a the residents of the “large” city created it is impossible for anyone to make and informed decision and thus cast an informed vote, a responsible vote.

    If this was a serious effort all of these important matters would have been presented to the residents of each city long ago to give them adequate time to discuss the pro’s and con’s of this proposal using actually data and facts and not suppositions and personal beliefs. The flippant manor in which these referendums were present to voters (waiting until just a few months before the election to place such a significant issue on the ballot, haphazard manor of collecting signatures and providing no information to voters prove the benefits of this initiative) is what makes this idea silly.

  2. So, it’s all bad, the take over, the non-consent, etc., unless it’s naperville taking over unincorporated naperville. I did move to unincorporated naperville precisely because i did NOT want to be governed by the naperville nine/ten. Now there’s talk of forced annexation, there’s the referendum started by the mayor’s new golden boy, isaac, and originally conceived by current council members, people we did NOT get to vote for, and who ignore us at meetings for that reason exactly, and lauded as genius by the 10th council member. Ironic huh.

    • The Mayor and several Council Members have repeatedly stated publicly that they do not support forced annexation. The City Council has one discussion about ways to address issues created for taxpayers by township governance were the Mayor mentions the forced annexation option follow quickly with a reason this was a bad idea and unincorporated Naperville resident only hear force annexation and start screaming. It makes these resident look more like chicken little then informed voters.

  3. You have a Snipers attitude. Attend meetings, take shots at those who speak at the meetings. Read newspapers, pick apart the editorials.

    But you did actually make a suggestion: do it the Trump way…meaning quickly I’m guessing. Other Trump Ways might mean pick the worst person for the job, maybe even a family member and do it for the most personal gain.

    If you want credibility by reporting on Naperville, I hope you will leave your enthusiasm for Trump in a private place.

    1/4 of eligible voters cast their vote for That Guy. Most of the rest of us are aghast…and embarrassed.

    • Why turn this into an anti-Trump article rather than comment on the actual point? This is what continues to contribute to the decisiveness in today’s society.

      • Why comment on my comment? What is YOUR actual point?

        The Watchdog periodically adds his pro-Trump comments to his comments…so, I assume he wants feedback about Trump. No? Why bring Trump into the discussion at all? Or Obama?

        As for my “sniping” characterization: the Watchdog often gets indignant about something he reads or hears…”responding’ without offering solutions. I follow suit. Not OK?

        Thanks for your question.

        • Sorry didn’t know you expected a question…. Weren’t you embarrassed for voting for a Clinton? You must be part of the elitist public that she appealed to..

    • I tried. I really tried to leave these comments alone.

      As you state Trump only had 1/4 of the eligible voters vote for him–that is correct. You can, and you should, be saying the same thing about Hillary. But in a typical democrat fashion you have chosen to skew the facts to your benefit and only share half of it. Do you work for CNN?

      She, too, only received a 1/4 of the eligible votes in this past election. In other words, over half of this country chose not to vote for either candidate. She won the popular vote by two-tenths of a percentage point and put all her eggs in California’s basket & not try to win WI, MI, NC, FL, PA, etc. Had she not won Cali, we wouldn’t be talking about her at all.

      Lastly, where does watchdog say do it Trump’s way?

      • Hi BD: Your restraint is commendable. You resisted commenting for 4 days. Excellent, if that’s what you were trying to do! But comments seem to be encouraged so…

        The References were: 1) “Considering the speed at which government works, it could take some time, but if the effort was made at ‘Trump-speed’ it wouldn’t that long, and the benefits would be worth it.” and 2) ““it’s wrong that such an action does not require the consent of the voters of the city into which the others are being assimilated”…Try telling that to Obama’s Department of Justice.”

        I didn’t mention Hillary and her 1/4 (plus 3 million) of the vote…because she has nothing to do with the article and it would have been irrelevant.

        If I wrote in a “typical Democrat fashion”, it’s by pure accident. I’m not a Democrat fashion-person. I don’t agree that the message was skewed…or that skewing messages is typical of anyone.

        Thanks for your helpful comment.

        Did you hope to make a point?

        MY point of writing was simply: this Watchdog site helps us to see what is happening in Naperville politics. While we may be a Republican dominated town, any assumption that most of her citizens are happy with Trump detracts from the message. I know I am not alone. Let’s leave Trump (and anti-Obama stuff) out of it. It subtracts, rather than adds.

        Just a suggestion…not meaning to generate angry pitchforks and torches.

        Cheers!

  4. Why comment on my comment? What is YOUR actual point?

    The Watchdog periodically adds his pro-Trump comments to his comments…so, I assume he wants feedback about Trump. No? Why bring Trump into the discussion at all? Or Obama?

    As for my “sniping” characterization: the Watchdog often gets indignant about something he reads or hears…”responding’ without offering solutions. I follow suit. Not OK?

    Thanks for your question.

  5. I agree with you regarding the Sun. It seems to me to be more like a PR dept for the City than a newspaper.

    The petitions for annexing the other cities into Naperville is interesting. You have to wonder who was behind it and what the motivation was. What they hoped to accomplish is not apparent, but clearly someone had a reason for doing it. Whoever was behind it was informed enough about the law, but did the petitions in a manner which was sloppy, apparently not according to the law, and probably destined to fail. Those two are not consistent. You cited that there has been talk about the need to ‘fix a flaw’ in the system of citizens getting something on the ballot. Could the motivation have been along those lines, a desire by one of these politicians to change state law to “fix” what he or she views as a ‘problem,’ which is the ability of a group of residents to get a referendum on the ballot relatively easy, with a fairly small number of signatures? That seems to be, so far at least, the only thing that may come out of that effort.

    Obviously I’m speculating.

    • The person involved hired a lawyer so they really did not need to know or understand the law regarding how to get a referendum on the ballot. The sloppy way the petitions were circulated gives the impression that they really did not understand this process.

      Depending on the what the petition is trying to get on the ballot it will require a total signature count that is greater then or equal to either 1% or 3% of total votes casts in the last consolidated election (approx 18,000 for Naperville). This is a very low requirement since the pool of eligible signatures is everyone registered to vote in the designated area (around 95,000 for Naperville). So for Naperville you are looking at needing to get signatures from round 1/5th to 3/5 ths of a percent of the total registered voters in Naperville (180 to 540 signatures). So for the smallest of the cities involved, Warrenville, they probably only needed around 60 valid signatures. That is not a very challenging target. Not sure what is so hard here, let alone what is broken and in need of fixing.

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