Could Naperville City Officials Give Old Folks A Break

Could the Naperville city council give old folks a break? They could, but would they? Probably not. And how do I get away with calling old folks, old? Well, I am one, in fact, I am closer to 100 than I am to 50. If Culver’s can give me a 5% discount on a ButterBurger, can’t city officials do a little something for a person’s successful effort to make it into their not-so-golden years. How about a little ‘shout out’ like “Wow, you’re really an old guy! Congratulations!”

Or how about this. The Naperville Police Department, along with AARP, offers a two-day refresher, Smart Driver Program, specifically for folks over 50, helping mature drivers to stay safe. The cost is $25, ($20 for AARP members). Space is limited to 50 attendees. Wouldn’t it be nice if the City would cover the $1000 – $1250 expense for Golden-Oldies to attend, as a show of support for the group most-hammered by inflation.

If city officials say, “we can’t do that, that’s reverse age-discrimination”. That’s a little weak, but OK, how about this; cover the residents 40% portion of side walk repair / replacement adjacent to their property. The City currently does not cover the expense of fixing sidewalks in need of repair. Evanston and Schaumburg, along with other cities cover the repair cost, why not Naperville. City officials say those cities are smaller than Naperville, so it’s easier for them to cover the expense, which mathematically makes no sense. If that’s the case, how is it that cities of comparable size (Fort Collins, Colorado, and Overland Park, Kansas) fully fund replacement.

Naperville councilwoman Patty Gustin is not in favor of helping residents with the replacement cost, focusing more on the effect it would have on the city’s budget, and the rising inflationary cost. Naperville councilwoman Jennifer Bruzan Taylor, has a different take on the issue stating she has always been concerned with the City not fully covering the expense, and letting it fall on the residents.

Wouldn’t it be nice if city officials factored in the concept of giving residents a break, when it came to the heavy load of expense they carry, especially in the current financial crunch folks are experiencing.

Show 4 Comments


  1. Jim Haselhorst

    The city has replaced the sidewalk in front of my house several times in the last couple of years with zero cost to me.

    Of course this sidewalk’s problems started when it was torn-up to put in a new water main. The city contractor that did this job made zero efforts to do it right since they did not seem to be concerned about city inspections and oversight. They got all the elevations wrong, as demonstrated by the varying heights of water access covers and fire hydrant along the street (not even close to what they were before all this “new” work). They also did not make any effort to properly compact the soil when they back filled around the new water main.

    In less then a year portions of the sidewalk had sunk so much that they cracked and needed to be replace. And of course they were replaced by a city contractor, who again did not do the job right. So it was no surprise that within a year the sidewalk was sinking and cracking again.

    Currently the sidewalk along the front of my property looks like something that belongs on an carnival ride. Of course the city has sent people out to grind down and smooth off the tripping hazards created by the uneven edges of the shifting segments of sidewalk. But that has not fixed the “low” spots that fills with water and during the winter become ice skating rinks.

    And you do not want to get me started on the Cluster F*#k that is my driveway apron since the city hired contractor redid it along with the alley. Again a contract the did it wrong because of inadequate city oversight.

    There are two ironies here. The first is that the sidewalk in front of my house had been around for decades without any problems until these city contractors showed up. The second is the amount of money and resources the city has spent fixing this mess could have easily covered the full cost of fixing other sidewalks in Naperville if only proper oversight had been exercised over city contractors to make sure they are following city codes, which they clearly are not.

  2. Ann

    Yes, I agree with you on sidewalk replacement. A break would be a wonderful tribute to the elder seniors of Naperville who have contributed over 30 yrs. to support the town. My situation is slightly different. I was part of a sting operation by two association members who took it upon themselves to tell the city that one slab of mine did need to be replaced. The issue in dispute was a less than inch lift in the corner and the rest of the panel was in perfect condition. Very few people walk in the corners of all panels. Confined to center or if two people, still in the center. I had measured and so did the construction people. Less than an inch. Over an inch, even 1 1/4 must go. Cost over $100.00 my portion. The two couples stood over the panel while their husband’s remained at the mailbox on the look out for any trouble. Nothing happened in terms of confrontation. I never knew what was about to happen in charges. If someone wants to incite a claim of a badly decomposed panel, all they have to do is call the town and they’ll comply even if the panel never needed to be replaced. The neighbors of mine have tried several times with Code Enforcement on snow shoveling, grass cutting, branches, squirrel inhabitants. What falls from my trees is tossed back into my yard. If its their trees, they look the other way.

  3. Ann

    How about this ?? In May, 2022 an outage of computer, TV, land line phone went out. Phone gone for 13 days. New cable company bought out old company I had for 13 yrs. Went to Police department and could not make an emergency call they said. They do not allow even in desperate need. PD sent me to City Hall. They said I could not use their land line phones to make a emergency call to cable company and a doctor’s appt. Went to Senior Services below Assessor’s office and a man blocked me from using their phone also, when an assistant led me to a room to call. Man came in and stood in front of the desk phone. His halt meant, no way. Yes, indeed……….we can really use a senior break or perhaps a humanitarian break you might say. I guess these things do not exist in Naperville ?? We could be viewed as an intrusion ?

  4. Ann

    Sad to hear the Senior Task Force has disbanded. Indelibly the Seniors will become a permanent blur in the eyes of Council. Waste of time to them. Taxpayers want fresher blood instead of “clingers”. Please check out my response on sidewalk and mostly being turned away from Senior Services located below the Assessor’s floor. Man working there blocked with his body from my using their phone to make an emergency call for my home in Naperville. Seems like my money is better served in parades, ice cream cones and pizza events for parents and their families. My children attended Naperville schools. So happy then to be here over 30 yrs. . Did not know what was coming around the corner. Ann

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