Learning city council rules and points of order can be a daunting task for newly elected council members. However by the time a council member has three-plus years of experience you would think that person would understand how things are done at the dais. Such is not the case with Naperville city councilwoman Patty Gustin. As her four year term is coming to a close, she still struggles with knowing the rules. To make matters worse, she tries to bull doze her way through the process.
It happened again at the last Naperville city council meeting when councilman Kevin Coyne made a motion to to amend the proposed animal control ordinance which was seconded by councilman John Krummen. Gustin jumped in wanting to get a second to her amended motion over Coyne, and nothing could be heard except for crickets.
In essence Gustin was trying to amend Coyne’s motion ,which can’t be done according to council rules. Mayor Steve Chirico tried to help her dig herself out of the hole she dug by explaining how she could make a motion in substitution, but Gustin was determined to do it her way and it fell flat.
I’m reminded of the saying, “Better to be silent and thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt”. That might be a bit harsh for Gustin, however reviewing council rules would undoubtedly benefit her city council endeavors.