We’re not talking about the Illinois Lottery (You have to play to win), and we’re not talking about former Governor Blagojevich’s scheme to sell the Illinois senate seat to the highest bidder which landed him in the Greybar Hotel.
What we are talking about here, is the appearance of the ‘Grim Reaper of city officials in’ the form of citizen John Kraft when he used his three minutes of Public Forum time to ‘out’ Naperville councilmen Dave Wentz and Joe McElroy, alleging that both have been delinquent in their electric utility payments to the city, which under state law disqualifies each from serving on the city council.
Watch and listen as John Kraft states his case, followed by McElroy interacting with the speaker, while Wentz is conspicuous in his defeaning silence:
McElroy was supposedly late 6 times out of 30, and councilman Wentz totally outdid McElroy by allegedly being late 22 times out of 24. It seems like it would have been in Wentz’s benefit if he could have been late in all 24, thereby using the excuse he has been using the wrong calendars (1913 and 1914) for the last two years (plausible deny-ability).
Acting city attorney, Jill Pelka-Wilger, chimed in by suggesting that Kraft file a complaint with the DuPage County state’s attorney’s office, since it’s not the City Council’s decision to unseat a council member. I had the feeling while watching the drama unfold, that Naperville councilman Bob Fieseler was ready to make a citizens-arrest and drive both McElroy and Wentz to the State’s Attorney’s office.
Citizen Kraft suggested in so many words that both McElroy and Wentz should resign on the spot, pack up their lunch boxes, and leave. However both stayed, which made sense, since it was very cold outside.
McElroy’s 24 out of 30 equates to a success rate of 80%, or good enough for a low ‘B’ grade at any Ivy League school. Not bad. And Wentz’s 2 of 24 success rate (8%) might qualify as a back-up QB for the Bears.
It’s a good thing that I’m not a Naperville council member, since I too would have been called out by citizen Kraft. Just last month, I realized I hadn’t paid a Cook County property tax bill because the bill had been sent to a wrong address. I paid it, including the late fee, but that would have qualified me to be in Fieseler’s car along with McElroy and Wentz. Mistakes happen, but 22 out of 24, that’s a stretch even for a politician.