Pouring cold honey out of a container is a very slow moving process, akin to trying to reduce the number of redundant government entities. That’s what a bill signed last July by Governor Bruce Rauner is trying to do by requiring Illinois county boards to submit a report identifying opportunities for local governments to consolidate or eliminate wasteful or duplication of services and responsibilities.
This is what Naperville city officials have attempted to do by consolidating the Naperville Township Road department into the City of Naperville road services. The effort has been met with nothing but resistance from the Township Road Supervisor, resulting in court action and a likely binding referendum. That shows the difficulty of well designed intentions of government officials trying to make a positive difference by reducing the number of local governments, which currently numbers close to 7,000 fiefdoms in Illinois; that’s more than any other State.
For many government officials, once in office they don’t want to leave, especially if what they are doing is next to nothing. Naperville city officials should be commended for persistence in making the effort for consolidation. It’s not easy or fun tackling bureaucracy in a tangled web of duplicity, inefficiency, and wastefulness. In fact, it almost seems overwhelming, but anything worth having, is worth working for, even if it is one fiefdom at a time.