Improving the quality of the Naperville city council at election time, is like climbing a sand dune, you go up two feet, then slide down one, then go up two feet, and slide down three. A lot of work, time, money, and words, and very little improvement to show for the effort. The end result of this year’s election is that new comer Benny White was elected, and incumbent Kevin Gallaher was given his walking papers by voters when he came in 8th place out of eight candidates. In the city council election of 2015, Gallagher was the lowest vote-getter of the eight council members elected.
This year, the top four vote-getters in addition to White were incumbents Judy Brodhead, John Krummen, and Kevin Coyne. Krummen barely edged out fifth-place finisher Julie Berkowicz. The vote differential was a mere 90 votes. In other words Krummen won by the same number of people, lined-up at Portello’s drive-through waiting for a hotdog. 143,000 people in Naperville and John ‘Johnny’ Krummen won by 90 votes; definitely not a convincing majority.
It had to be the big red ‘K’ on his yard signs that pushed him from fifth place to fourth place. Two years ago in the last city council election, Krummen came in 7th place with eight being elected, so he is definitely living on the edge with voters. Krummen is the candidate who used pictures from his 2015 election on his 2017 mailers, making it appear the folks from 2015 were endorsing his candidacy in 2017. Tricky John ‘Johnny’ Krummen tricked the voters, just as he tricked the residents with all the money they would save with so-called smart meters. Not one dime has been saved by one resident.
Councilwoman Judy Brodhead benefited from her ballot position (first name on ballot), and the fact that she was the only female incumbent. In the 2015 election, she was one of four females on the ballot and came in fourth place; definitely not a vote of confidence. When the term limit referendum passed a few years ago, it was designed for the likes of Brodhead because it appears that might be the only way to get her off the dais. Her expiration date has long passed, but she continues to take up space during council meetings.
Councilman Kevin Coyne, endorsed by Watchdog, came in second place with a total of 6,217 votes which equates to about $11 per vote spent by and for him, totaling over $70,000. That’s a shipload of money spent to be a public servant. Coyne will serve four years at $20K per year salary (part time) meaning there will be a $10K net salary profit for his term, equating to $2500 per year or about $7 per day or 30-cents per hour. That’s a lot of money spent for three dimes per hour net salary-profit.
Benny White also endorsed by Watchdog came in third place, will be a welcome addition to the council. Residents can only hope that he is who we think he is. Time will tell.
Mike Isaac (endorsed by Watchdog) came in 6th place. Watchdog felt he was the strongest candidate of the non-incumbents, but it appears Naperville is not as Welcoming as councilwoman Becky Anderson proclaims Naperville to be.
It’s not easy climbing a huge sand dune. The key is perseverance.