‘Scrooge’ is a 1951 film adaption of Charles Dickens “A Christmas Carol”. He wasn’t necessarily a likeable fellow. In order to describe Ebenezer Scrooge you would have to use words like ‘prominent arrogant local businessman, cold-hearted, greedy, selfish, and unwillingness to give, a bit mean-spirited’, and he didn’t necessarily like things that made people happy. In general, an all around curmudgeon. Fortunately we have no one on the Naperville city council that comes close to that description.
But if we had to find someone on the Naperville city council who could best represent Scrooge, who would that be? There’s no doubt that each city council member, at some time or another during council meetings this year has elevated his ‘Scrooge-quotient’ with ill-advised words and actions towards residents. Some of the better Scrooges are no longer on the council, however we’re not at a loss for candidates. Even if the ‘Scrooge-council-candidates’ were tied going into the last city council meeting, a clear winner did emerge at the last council meeting to ‘accept’ the Scrooge Trophy and that was councilman Grant Wehrli.
So what qualifies Grant as the council’s Scrooge? It’s not that he is a prominent local businessman. However, anybody with his name on a road (Wehrli Road), or his name on a stadium (Wehrli Stadium) probably finds it more challenging to relate to “common folk” as did Scrooge. At times Grant has been a bit mean-spirited, but then again I have been accused of that also. The difference is that we are trying to find the ‘Scrooge of the Council’, hence I don’t qualify.
And yes, Grant was the flag-carrier for the forced installation of so-called Smart Meters resulting in the hand-cuffing and arrest of two Naperville women attempting to protect their homes and families. And yes, Grant Wehrli also put his stamp of approval for a do-over vote against the landslide vote favoring district representation, and we could go on and on.
One only needs to look at the last Naperville city council meeting when councilman Grant Wehrli was the only ‘no’ vote for both disallowing a drive-through for medical marijuana, and disallowing more than 10% of floor space for other related products. So Grant loudly said ‘no’ to those in need, making it physically more difficult to purchase legal products.
Let’s take a look at how councilman Grant Wehrli would want an elderly person with a dog to get near a retail establishment in order to obtain an item to alleviate their pain.
At the same meeting, councilman Grant Wehrli was also the only council member to vote a resounding “No” against extending permits for food vendors to sell something as simple as a hot dog. 84% of residents surveyed, consider food carts an enhancement to Naperville’s downtown ambiance, so that means 8 out of 10 like the idea. And two would say ‘no’ to letting a hot dog guy sell a hot dog to a guy who whats to buy a hot dog. And who are those two? Scrooge and councilman Grant Wehrli. Scrooge himself would be proud of Grant Wehrli.