Dogs may be “man’s best friend”, but it appears the Naperville city council is not a best friend to a dog. When the Naperville city council had an opportunity to help make dogs’ lives safer and happier, they stepped back into the shadows and decided to do nothing, other than kicking the can down the road. Ask a Naperville city council member what their favorite sport is, and chances are you will hear a deafening scream for soccer.
Council members can’t bring themselves to take any action in favor of pet protection. The council decided to table a vote on an ordinance banning pet stores from selling dogs and cats from any source other than rescue organizations or animal shelters. The city council meeting lasted ten minutes short of four hours with 75% of the meeting being devoted to the issue of puppy mills.
Thirty-eight people spoke totaling almost two hours with over 90% favoring pet protection from puppy mills, but when it came time for the council to take a stand one way or another, all but Mayor Steve Chirico chose to do nothing and wait again for something magical to happen at the State level or elsewhere.
Decision-making has not been a strength of council members Becky Anderson, Judy Brodhead, Patty Gustin, and John Krummen. For them to kick the can down the road is no surprise, however it is a surprise that Kevin Coyne, Paul Hinterlong, Rebecca Obarski, and Benny White joined in the delay. The eight council members kicked the decision 60 days into the future, and chances are they will kick it again in 60 days.
The other option was for the council to approve city enforcement of the State of Illinois Animal Act which restricts pet stores from buying from commercial breeders with five or more breeding dogs that have been cited for violations during inspections from the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture).
Mayor Chirico stated that “it’s time for (some type of) action” and that even short steps in the “in the right direction” would be prudent. He finished by saying, “We need to move forward”. At which time, the other members of council moved backward.
To councilman Paul Hinterlong’s credit, before moving backward, he expressed his frustration at both the State and Federal level for not taking action, and leaving it for local government.
In the meantime dogs and cats will have to endure with the status quo. No doubt, that if those eight council members could trade places for one day with a puppy mill dog, they absolutely would be able to finally make a timely decision.