City Manager Krieger Sweats Under Council Interrogation

 This one was painful to watch. I’m referring to the Monday October 21 Naperville Special City Council Meeting which focused on the Financial Update – Five Year Plan.

We’ve all been in this situation at some time or another. Trying to justify that which is unjustifiable, trying to talk about something and having no clue about what we’re talking about, trying to make something sound good, that’s not good, hoping that time flies by, but it just drags on and on. This is the situation that Naperville city manager Doug Krieger found himself in; the more he talked, the less sense he made.

‘It’s not a good place to be, it’s disturbing and it’s terrible’. In fact, that’s exactly how Naperville councilman Steve Chirico described the fact that Naperville will need to borrow almost $30 million during the next five years,  to cover the cost of electric. Watch and listen as Chirico responds to comments by Finance Director Karen DeAngelis:

City manager Doug Krieger has never been accused of being accountable. He can tap-dance around issues, side-step questions, and be evasive. He employed all three tactics on this particular evening.

Watch and listen as councilman McElroy asks Krieger a simple and specific question, and after more than three minutes of rambling, Krieger still hasn’t answered the question.

This is where it really began to go sideways for Krieger as he continued to ramble. It’s apparent that Doug Krieger subscribes to the philosophy, that “if you can’t convince them with facts, then dazzle them with ‘fertilizer” Watch and listen as Naperville city manager Doug Krieger tries to dazzle the council:

It’s obvious by the questions asked, and non-verbal communication that councilmen Chirico, Krause, and McElroy can’t be fooled by Krieger. Councilman Bob Fieseler was a no-show for the meeting, and councilman Grant Wehrli sat silent as Krieger was sweating under the lights-of-questioning. This is interesting, since Fieseler was the ‘flag carrier’, and Wehrli was the ‘bugle-boy” for spearheading the so-called Smart Grid and forced installation of Smart Meters.

Watch and listen while Krieger continues to dig a hole as councilmen Krause and Chirico send a message with pin-point accurate questions.

Blaming it on Mother Nature, gravity, luck, or the designated hitter is not a sign of leadership. It’s clear that Naperville city manager Krieger was not on top of his game. The problem is that even if he was on top of his game, it’s not equal to the responsibility and accountability needed for managing the city of Naperville.

The ‘Five Year Plan’ looks like smoke and mirrors. Naperville needs a “Now Plan”, and that starts with doing what the Chicago Cubs are doing….look for a new Manager.

Show 8 Comments


  1. Gerard H Schilling

    We hate to say we told them so but like all these effete snob programs which claim to know what is best for the citizens it has come full circle to hit them square between the eyes. The bigger problem is not holding any politicians or bureaucrats responsible. I can think of five that ought to be fired or lose in the next election. As to bureaucrats Krieger and Curran should be first up on the block while Fieseler and Wehrli should be voted out and Wehrli is running for state rep replacing Sanger who is also culpable in this fiasco and is running for Federal Rep. A pox on all of them.

  2. Sandy

    Trust but Verify. Great companies as well as cities go bankrupt if the Boards and Executives refuse to fully understand what management is selling. They must verify the facts for themselves. The citizens were warning Council about the coming financial disaster, calling out Curran and Kreieger for three years. I, myself, went before Council, questioning the Electric Company’s negative free cash flow, months ago. I remember being told publically, by Krieger that it was the way that Public accounting worked, and that it would resolve itself. It has only gotten worse. Mr. Shilling and so many others have been studying the financials, the contracts and the trends and have continuously warned Council that there were major problems ahead. Over 4,000 citizens signed petitions demanding a referendum on the smart meter issue, as many had strong reservations about the costs, rationale, and science behind it.

    Was the flawed rate study influenced by someone who may have had a personal or professional agenda to make the “smart” meter fiasco more palatable? Most of us knew the rate study was wrong. Next is “time of use billing” that will economically ration electricity, hurting the most fragile of our citizens.

    If Krieger and Curran were wrong about the financials, God help all of us, especially our children if they are also wrong about the health effects of 24/7 exposure of RF from not only the wireless meters, but the mesh network across our entire city, schools, parks, churches and back yard.

    Sell the Electric Company, pay off the $300 Million in total city debt, loose the overhead costs to the taxpayers, and let the citizens have a choice in the free energy market. It’s my opinion, that this is going to be Naperville’s Enron moment.

  3. Buck Naper

    As of 9/30/2013, total cash for the electric utility fund was a NEGATIVE $4.46 million, and the Smart Grid fund was a NEGATIVE $1.3 million. Most astounding, the unrestricted cash for the two accounts was NEGATIVE $15.2 million. Mr Krieger, you can’t blame this mess on the weather!

  4. In my review of the Naperville smart grid, I have not focused on the traditional financials. But in reviewing societal benefits for the smart grid, I noticed that City of Naperville documents indicated savings in excess of benefits expected by ComEd for its planned smart grid. How could this be I thought? … I discovered that the City exaggerated the carbon emissions reductions for the NSGI by at least 1,500% by misinterpreting the consultant’s calculations over a 15-year period and at some point assumed that those savings occurred each year. With that type of incompetence, nothing surprises me about how much money they may loose in the Electric Dept., whether it be due to bad decisions or incompetence. For more information on green house calculations see link at

  5. Sweetdee

    I actually feel bad for Krieger – I know, I know, but I do – he has risen in the ranks to a position he does not possess the ability to accomplish. Look up the Peter Principle, and you will see poor Mr. Kriegers’ picture. He has most definitely been promoted to a position for which he does not possess the skills. “Employees tend to rise to their level of incompetence.” This could actually be said about most high ranking members of Naperville’s city government. Instead, “work is accomplished by those employees who have not yet reached their level of incompetence.” As evidenced by Karen DeAngelis and her grasp of the financial position Naperville is in. Steve Chirico may indeed rise to his level of incompetence if he is elected Mayor. For now, he is “disturbed” and thinks it’s “terrible” that we will have to borrow 30 Million dollars, but he was one of the champions of smart meter spending that helped put us in the position we are in. Instead of dismissing and being combative towards residents, maybe they should all listen for a change. We have some pretty savvy residents here; successful business owners, managers, scientists, accountants, that have all talked to the counsel and been ignored. They need to open up their small minds and realize residents have great ideas and plans for the future of Naperville.

  6. lilolady

    Looks as though Naperville residents need to find a way to force the city to sell the electric utility to people who know what they’re doing. $30 million here, $30 million there, pretty soon you’re talking about real money. Obviously, these people are in over their heads. It’s also past time for a binding referendum limiting council spending on any one project to $1 million and requiring passage of a referendum for anything more. Naperville is on the same path to insolvency as Chicago, the State of Illinois and the Federal Government. Total arrogance, irresponsibility and incompetence.

  7. Well said.
    All of the people who have written their thoughts have so eloquently stated what I feel. Bravo. Thank you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *