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City considers adding sales tax

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Naperville currently does not have its own sales tax, but under home rule authority, it is allowed to implement one.

However, with a projected $14.1 million budget shortfall in the 2010-2011 year, the City Council is considering adding a sales tax as an option for closing the gap.

Other options include raising property taxes, raising gas taxes, deferring road work or taking on more debt. The property tax would have to rise from 71 cents to 89 cents per $100, and road work would get more expensive if it is delayed.

Also under consideration was the reduction of the downtown food and beverage tax if a sales tax is added, as that was part of the agreement when the tax was implemented.

Do you think a sales tax is called for, or is there a better option?

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152 Comments

How does one explain Sgt. Drew Peterson receiving a Social Security Benefit of $2,768 per month according to a Naperville Sun article?

He was a police officer all his life until he was terminated in his 28th year before he qualified for the full 75% pension preventing him from obtaining the maximum pension at his final and highest salary.

Was he able to work a second full time job while a police officer?

If so, maybe being a police officer is not the most stressful job in the world.

I know many fire fighters have second full time jobs and many have businesses. I understand their work is only stressful an hour or two a week when they get THAT CALL. But I thought police officers were stressed all the time.

This was right from the Sun.

Maybe someone could explain it.

A social security benefit of $2,768 is not earned on a part time mininum wage job. I believe to achieve that kind of wage you have to have a very very high salary for 45 years plus. But I could be wrong as I have not yet received Social Security Benefits and don't know much about the system. Let us just say I am not counting on it for my retirement and not putting much energy into studying it.

CIJ

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PS. Many of us would only dream of working 30 years and retiring with nearly $10,000 dollar pay-outs per month. He may have gotten close to this number if he did not screw up and completed his full 30 years in the Bolingbrook Police Dept. I guess if the government is going to allow people to retire with 10k from double government plans, it explains why we owe China so much money. We are living on borrowed time.

My family wants to move to Austrailia. I use to laugh at them. I am no longer laughing. Maybe those who want me to leave town because they think I should accept HIGHER TAXES each year will one day have their wish come true. I suspect if Naperville continues on its destructive path it will one day have a $500 million Accrued Acturarial Pension Liability Deficit with all the homes abandoned like in certain Detroit neighborhoods.

I am just wondering who is going to pay for these Big Fat Salaries, Big Fat Benefits and Big Fat Pensions if we all leave town as they want us. I know my $70,000 in annual real estate taxes to this town is a drop in the bucket but if you throw 1000 similar to ME out of town, that is $70 million. I am sure there are 1000 residents besides me who think taxes in this town are just becoming unbearable.

I could almost personally hire my on police officer and fire fighter with my tax money as many do work for $35,000 a year in many of the less wealthy suburbs.

Ironically, if they throw us all out of town, City Employees will have to make 100% of their pay after taxes in pension contributions so they can hope to get 75% of their highest and final pay when they retire in 30 years at the very young age at 52 to sit in their rocking chairs and smoke Cuban Cigars. Maybe then they would finally appreciate what we do for them. As Tim West said, they are paid very well for their services and should not constantly tell us how hard they work especially while they are behind closed doors in those Fire Stations and no one knows what they are doing. Certainly no one is putting out a fire in the fire station or pumping up a heart. Let us face it they do have a very easy job except for those few stressful moments which they are trained to handle and become immune to after many years on the job. Let us stop the whining, please!

If you want to talk about hard work, lets us talk about factory workers and construction workers....they do back breaking work even in the deep freeze of the winters and the hot sun of the summers. Guess when they are allowed to retire with a FULL SOCIAL SECURITY CHECK. Age 70. Unfair! Unjust! Unbelievable!

End of Conversation.

CIJ,
A direct answer was posted to your "question" and/or "comment" on October 27, 2009 7:15 PM, I thought City Officials disguised as bloggers told us that Police and Fire Fighters can not receive both Pensions and Social Security!

See my post in the "Council votes to raise property tax rate" thread and dated October 28, 2009 2:16 PM. This post explains "The Social Security Government Pension Offset" and has direct quotes from the SS website. Police and Firefighters DO NOT earn Social Security benefits working their jobs. They can earn benefits, reduced by 2/3, if they work a second job in the private sector.

And if you call Police or Firefighters working a second job double dipping, Then read this from MSNBC website.....

“The number of workers in the United States who have a full-time job and also have a part-time job on the side has risen about 5 percent to 4.17 million in 2007 from 3.98 million the prior year, according to Department of Labor statistics.” From at article on MSNBC On-line.

People, 4.17 million in 2007, work second jobs to make ends meet. They may have a single income home and a spouse may stay at home to raise the kids. It's not double dipping, it's being responsible and paying their bills.

Peterson is currently receiving $6,067.71 monthly from his Bolingbrook police pension and $2,758 monthly from Social Security, the suit said.

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Wow!

Right from today's Naperville Sun carried from the Herald-News.

I thought City Officials disguised as bloggers told us that Police and Fire Fighters can not receive both Pensions and Social Security!

Is the Naperville Sun fabricating a story?

If this is not GREED at TAXPAYER EXPENSE, I don't know what is.

Next they will want the kitchen sink out of each house in Naperville.

CIJ

Another NFPA 1710 fire department staffing standard research link.

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is an international
organization of more than 75,000 individuals and more than 80 national trade and professional organizations. NFPA’s mission is to reduce the worldwide burden of fire and other hazards on the quality of life by developing and advocating scientifically based consensus codes and standards, research, training and education.

Who Is Involved
At the time of the final vote on NFPA 1710, the Technical
Committee contained representatives from seven different
classes of NFPA members, including Consumers,
Enforcers, Labor, Manufacturers, Research/Testing, Special
Experts and Users. No more than one-third of the voting
members of the Committee represented one of these
interests, as explicitly required by NFPA rules. The
following is a breakdown of the membership:
• Consumers (City Managers), 2, 6%
• Enforcers (Fire Chiefs, including 3 representatives from
the International Association of Fire Chiefs, or IAFC),
10, 32%
• Labor (Union representatives, including 3 from the
IAFF), 7, 23%
• Manufacturers (Trade Group organizations), 2, 6%
Research/Testing, 1, 3%
• Special Experts, 4, 13%
• Users, 5, 16%

Here is a link to the requirements for NFPA Committee membership.
http://www.hemmingfire.com/news/fullstory.php/aid/598/NFPA_Committees_want_members.html

Link to info on NFPA 1710
http://www.iaff.org/tech/PDF/NFPA1710ImplementationGuide.pdf

NFPA is not just fire service people or groups. NFPA is experts in ALL fields....... DO YOUR RESEARCH, I HAVE ..

By Anonymous ONE on October 21, 2009 2:49 PM

If, however, there is a federal or state requirement (pro rata population) then your battle is not with the city, but with the state / federal who are telling us how many we must have? (I am assuming that the insurance underwriters have a say in this as well as the NFPA).

By GJC on October 13, 2009 2:25 PM

“I quite like the idea that a reevaluation of the purported over-staffing of the fire department be undertaken to see if it is actually so, by people who know what they're talking about, that is, professionals.”

I am posting this in hopes that some of you will review the links attached below. These links will help you to understand the basis for fire and ems staffing. Contained in the links are staffing standards as set forth by the National Fire Protection Assoc and viewed by courts across the country as THE national standard.... The current NFPA 1710 standards are dated 2004 and a recent 2010 update. THESE ARE NOT OLD STARDARDS, BUT CURRENT , MODERN AND UP TO DATE BASIS FOR FIRE DEPARTMENT AND EMS STAFFING.

To those on this blog site that think cutting firefighter staffing and closing fire stations would save money, I would ask that you review the links cited below. In the first link the Providence fire department did a study covering firefighter safety, station and manning reductions. The study shows an increase in over all costs. This study has been applied, in court, to several fire department staffing cases (both large and small departments).

The other links contain information covering NFPA 1710 and SAFER grants from the federal government. In NFPA 1710, fire department staffing standards are set. These standards have also been used in many court cases covering firefighter injuries.

A quote from one of those links..

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recently issued a new standard regarding the organization, deployment and staffing of career fire departments–NFPA 1710. The International Association of Fire Fighters is providing the following questions and answers document to assist the fire and emergency medical service in understanding this standard.

"The modern trend, however, is for courts to find exceptions to this rule, and over the past several years, this doctrine has rapidly eroded in ways that could expose jurisdictions to liability for the foreseeable consequences of their failure to adequately fund or staff their fire departments. Courts recognizing this modern trend will likely consider the NFPA 1710 Standard in determining whether such liability is properly imposed upon public fire departments and their municipalities.

Many NFPA standards have been enacted into law at the federal, state, provincial and local levels. Some have argued that, because jurisdictions having authority are not required to automatically enact a particular NFPA standard, violation of an NFPA standard does not automatically give rise to a finding of liability against a jurisdiction that has not adopted the standard. Having said that, however, one should be mindful that courts frequently rely upon NFPA standards to determine the “industry standard” for fire protection and safety measures. Judicial reliance on NFPA doctrines is most frequently found in common law negligence claims. To prevail in a common law negligence claim, the plaintiff must show that the defendant owed a duty of care to the plaintiff; that the defendant breached this duty of care; and that this breach

was the cause of the plaintiff’s injury.

The NFPA 1710 Standard could be found to be highly relevant to the question of whether a jurisdiction has negligently failed to provide adequate fire or emergency medical protection to an individual harmed in a fire or medical emergency. To prevail in such a claim, the individual would have to show that the jurisdiction failed to provide the level of service required by the standard, and that this failure was a cause of his or her injury.

Because the NFPA 1710 Standard is the first international standard to establish a benchmark level for fire and emergency medical response capabilities, there is little precedence governing how the standard might be used in such lawsuits. It is safe to assume, however, that the level of fire and emergency medical service provided by a jurisdiction will be compared to the NFPA 1710 Standard in courts considering such lawsuits even where the particular jurisdiction has not specifically adopted the standard. As such, it is fair to say that a jurisdiction assumes some additional legal risk by failing to abide by the NFPA 1710 Standard even where it has failed to explicitly adopt the standard."

Save a few dollars now. When a firefighter or taxpayer is injured, and staffing levels are reviewed against national studies and standards, get ready to loose your shirt in court.

If you look at nothing else on this list….. watch the first two YOUTUBE videos.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Kay3VsEXDY

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n35MklU6fis&feature=related

http://www.nfpa.org/itemDetail.asp?categoryID=999&itemID=24346&URL=Codes+and+Standards/Code+development+process/

http://firefighterclosecalls.com/downloads/Providencestaffingstudy.pdf

https://www.firegrantsupport.com/safer/faq/07/faq_natstand.aspx

home.comcast.net/~billfoss/ media_NFPA1710.doc

http://commdocs.house.gov/committees/science/hsy87543.000/hsy87543_0.HTM

http://www.firegrantsupport.com/safer/

http://www.iafc.org/displaycommon.cfm?an=1&subarticlenbr=524

http://www.publicsafetymed.com/Redmond%20docs/1710Q&A.pdf

Here are my ideas:

1. Pay for garbage. Naperville is the only town that has "free" garbage service. Either sticker system or utility bill monthly fee.

2. Executive pay cuts and no pay for city council. No medical/dental for city council.

3. Furlough days

4. Close city admin functions for 1 day a month.

5. .25% - .50% sales tax increase. Naperville is still competetive with this rate. We are at 7.25% currently Will/DuPage. Oakbrook, in comparison, is 7.75% in DuPage Co and 9.75% in Cook Co.

I thumb-nailed a year-over-year raise which may or may not be consistent with what has been bandied about on this forum.

Scary thing is, we can apply this to TRS also. There the year-over-year employee raise is greater than 5% but the same 3% after retirement.

If you try 3% raises in place of 5%, you get .36 instead of .2025. Put in a raise greater than 5% then it gets downright sad. Replace 7.5% with, say 4%, as is mentioned in the FY2009 data from the city and you can start crying about the employer match.

So with a 3% raise, 7.5% ROI the city would have to equal the employee mandatory contribution in my model (.36x2 = .72 ). Does anyone know the actuarial models used? I do see that the city is now in a 2:1 ratio of City:Employee contributions for the FD and PD. Does anyone now of any company at any point in history that had anything close to that level of match?

e^(i*pi)


in excel you can use =power(1.075,30) to figure 1.075 to the 30th power.

e^(i*pi) wrote:

I will quickly point out that with 5% raises, 7.5% ROI and 10% of salary put away will not support a 60% or 75% pension. S=starting salary.
[.10 * S *(1.075)^30] / [S* (1.05)^30] = .2025


Where did the 5% raise figure come from?

I will quickly point out that with 5% raises, 7.5% ROI and 10% of salary put away will not support a 60% or 75% pension. S=starting salary.
[.10 * S *(1.075)^30] / [S* (1.05)^30] = .2025

In other words, if we assume that 10% of the salary is taken out in year 1 (employee required contribution) , this will only support a 20.25% of the final salary. If the city matches it, we are now up to 40.5%

(assumptions = starts year 0, retires year 30. All of the money from year 0 supports pension in year 30, year 1 -- year 31, etc.. up to year 29--year 59. More about this later and how the 3% pension raise being less than the year-to-year raise helps recoup some value very LATE in the assumed 30-year retirement cycle. I can flesh this out later. I know there are some short term working schleps who contribute without seeing benefits; life cycles may be favorable to not worrying about 30 years of retirement,etc...)

e^(i*pi)

e^(i*pi),

You are right. Obviously, in order for the pension systems to be viable, the pension investment portfolios need to have long-term average returns that are least equal to the cost of living increases given to retirees.

Actually, the average returns need to be significantly higher than the cost of living increases, though, as the portfolios need to grow in order to meet the demands placed on the sytstem by future NPD and NFD retirees, whose numbers will increase quite a bit over the next few decades. I believe the actuaries assume a 7.5% ROI (before inflation) when they calculate the city's annual obligation. We have not been getting that the past couple of years (to say the least), which is why the accrued liability deficit has been growing. My guess is that the deficit will have shrunk some by the end of the current fiscal year, assuming the markets don't go down too much from their current levels.

-JQP

I've been thinking about the pension mess. My quick thought is that is if we are getting an actual return on investment which is the LESS than the average raise *, it is purely mathematically impossible to give a pension larger than what we have put away each year. I have done calculations for different ROI compared to raises (with ROI = k times raise, with 2.5 > k > 1). They are all ugly.

I will use real numbers and real examples later when I have time.

e^(i*pi)

* = from Naperville Budget linked above.

By Experienced on October 15, 2009 5:06 PM
Citizen Investigative Journalist on October 15, 2009 2:42 PM

I suspect that the Council got the audit this week and the quick adjournment on Tuesday was precipitated by Furstenau wanting to discuss it.

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Let us just say I know you are right from sources who have spoken to Furstenau.

I had mentioned this on the blog site right after that Tuesday meeting.

I think you meant to say last week though as the Council Meeting was last Tuesday.

I watched the meeting and CM Furstenau was pi$$ed and promised to retaliate in future sessions. He was actually boiling over after the meeting according to my sources.

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These folks in City Hall want no publicity and want to be off the radar. I don't think they have the backbone or desire to ask for 10% reductions. They know the city employees will fight back and they are not ready to stand their ground for the sake of the taxpayers.

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They are not to worried about the residents since the majority in this town are apathetic and half asleep. The Naperville Sun has not done its job to wake them up for reasons unbeknownst to me other than it does not enjoy investigative journalism.

The mother Chicago Sun Times has been on a rampage against pensions in the City of Chicago and the State of Illinois.

This leads me to believe strong establishment influences still exist in the Naperville Sun and are working with the city establishment forces to keep it hush hush as much as possible.

Tim West seems to be calling the political shots at the Naperville Sun. I think he tells the editors how far they can go to avoid the scathing wrath of City Hall and they apparently listen to him because of his very long career.

The Naperville Sun dumped Editor/Publisher Jim Lynch who was beginning to challenge City Hall but they will never dump Tim West.(If it was about cost cutting they would have laid off Mr. West who did one fifth the work of Mr. Lynch and probably paid much more due to longevity.) He may as well own the Naperville Sun the way he controls it. It blows my mind. From those days when he was the Editor/Publisher and did not allow publication of paid ads Napergate V and VI, I knew he was the Big Kahuna there regardless of what his title or position was or is.

They stripped Mr. West of some of his dutites to take some stress off of him due to his heart condition and other ailments but whenever a crucial decision has to be made regarding City Hall, in my humble OPINION he is the behind the scenes advisor and his word is THE FINAL WORD.

CIJ

1. Naperville has more than 4 ambulances.

2. Double dipping is a worthless argument. No matter what, you have to pay a pension AND a salary for the new position. So If someone is qualified (they have to go through a process) why not have the best person for the job? Its costing you no more money than if some outsider got the new job, you still have to pay the pension reguardless.

Citizen Investigative Journalist on October 15, 2009 2:42 PM

I suspect that the Council got the audit this week and the quick adjournment on Tuesday was precipitated by Furstenau wanting to discuss it.

Experienced,

Thank you for your quick response. You have been extremely helpful since CB Bob has dropped off the face of the earth after the legal dept. may have muzzled him as he was becoming OUTSPOKEN. They can muzzle anyone for the smallest possible excuse when they want to by mentioning potential litigation if this or that occurs.

I suspect that is what they did to the guy who was blogging with us for so long and whom initially gave us the SCOOP on this PENSION MESS.

CIJ

By Citizen Investigative Journalist on October 15, 2009 1:32 AM
Forensic Accountant Experienced,

How did you know when it is posted? Do you check the City Web Site daily or does someone tip you off when it is finally posted?

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No, I filed an FOIA and they responded that it was now on-line.

Forensic Accountant Experienced,

Thanks for providing this valuable information and the link to it.

I used it extensively on the Open Topic Thread.

How did you know when it is posted? Do you check the City Web Site daily or does someone tip you off when it is finally posted?

The way I understand the numbers we have a disaster in the making.

We were suppose to make 7.5% returns on investment per year and instead in the last 10 years these pension funds produced 3-4% not per year but for the entire 10 year period or .3-.4% per year.

To go from a $61.4 million to a $96.2 million pension liability deficit in one year for the P and F pensions is really incredible.

However, I believe the real numbers would have been much worse but the Actuarials are apparently doing their best not to make the city look too bad by tweeking the numbers somehow.

If you are suppose to make 7.5% on this $20.52 million that was lost in the stock market, I can not imagine how this could only increase the pension liability deficit by $34.8 million dollars. At 7.5% this lost money would have doubled in 10 years to $41 million if it had not been lost. After 20 years to $82 million. After 30 years to $164 million.

So basically because of this loss of $20.52 million we will have $164 million less in the pension funds to pay pensions in 30 years.

I am a little surprised some bloggers don't seem to understand that the future is just as important as the present when dealing with this Pension Fiasco or Tsunami as it appears to be gaining strength annually.

Maybe the Actuaries somehow realize that 7.5% returns are no longer attainable or sustainable and they lowered the return expectations even though they have not reflected the lower expectations in the financial report.

What do you think is going on here, Experienced?

Do you think City Officials thought they somehow could bury these disastrous numbers like the Napergate Numbers and get away with it a second time?

Do you thinnk without your FOIA Request we would have ever known the truth?

I guess the City proved in the Napergate Era if they want to hide numbers they can and no one can find them. In a $400 million budget you can hide $1 million pretty easily. That is all the Napergate Trials cost per year for 10 years for a total of $10 million.

But this was $20.52 million in one year. How in the world did they expect to hide it? Where were they going to hide it? It almost sounded like they did in the first financial release and after you exposed them they thought they better DISCLOSE HONESTLY which apparently they did with possibly some minor or major tweeking.

You may not be able to be as blunt as I am on this blog site as you made a personal visit to City Hall and they now know who you are. I am thankful I am still very Anonymous and can keep beating the drums as loud as Moderator Magee will let me beat them.

Again, thanks for all your help. It is very much appreciated.

CIJ

The Comprehensive Financial Report for 2009 is now on-line (surprising what an FOIA request will spark). http://naperville.il.us/emplibrary/FY09CAFR.pdf

Pension summary is on pages x and xi. It acknowleges the loses and sets funded liability levels at Police 56.5% and Fire 61.3%. Page 33 and 40 discuss permitted investment policies. An in depth analysis starts on page 57. Investment allocation is on Page 59. Investment loses page 60. Unfunded liability on page 61. $52.8 million and $43.4 million. Again Sikich discusses the IMRF, but in my mind IMRF is a state fund for which the City's only liability is to make annual contributions. Any shortfall is the Pension Plan's problem.

It sounds like they found 116 ignorants....and many were considered Constitutional Scholars...lol...

They had no FORESIGHT obviously!

Always good to learn from you Experienced....you are a wealth of knowledge..

Thank you,

CIJ

By Citizen Investigative Journalist on October 13, 2009 5:46 PM

It is total insanity that our State Legislators who also collect Big Fat Pensions wrote such nonsense in the Constituion and got away with it.
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The 1970 Constitution was not written by the General Assembly. It was written by a Constitutional Convention made up of 116 delegates elected by the citizens of our state. The majority were not legislators or governmental employees but just citizens who were not on the public payroll before the convention started, and the majority were not on the public payroll after the convention ended. Many were constitutional scholars.

By John Q. Public on October 13, 2009 3:04 PM
CIJ,

But even those of us who don't have guaranteed pensions need the market to get better if we're ever going to retire. If it does not improve in the next 10-15 years, then I think all bets are off in regard to pensions.

-JQP

$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

JQP,

It is true that for the majority of us private citizens who do not have pensions, we need for the market to get better if we are ever going to retire. Time Magazine states we need to plan on working 5 years beyond normal retirement if we are going to make it even assuming the market gets better.

If the market does not get better all bets are off for private citizens.

The bets are not off in regards to pensions for government and city employees. Pensions are guaranteed by the taxpayers. The Constituion guarantees them. What will happen is they will just tax us more and more to make these pension payments unless we repeal the Constituion that guarantees them. Something almost impossible since the legislators who have the power are also receiving these BIG FAT PENSIONS.

The reason I hate the Pension System is the Funds don't have any risk. They can invest in risky stocks in hopes of getting greater returns. If it works, they come to the taxpayers and say we now want 100% pension pay-outs as happened in California before the bubble burst. Since the IMPLOSION, state employees had to take an 18% cut in wages which also automatically result in 18% pension pay-out reductions.

In Illinois, if they invest in risky stocks and lose all their money they just come back to the taxpayers and say the Constitution promised us 75% of our final and highest wages. Now deliver. We don't care if we lost the money. The Constituton says you must tax the taxpayers a second time and replinish our funds even though managers we appointed lost the money. Yes, our silly Constitution actually implies and demands that. The only way to fight the Constitution is to really fire as many City Employees as you can until they demand the Constituion is repealed. Until they realize a JOB without a PENSION is better than NO JOB!

It is total insanity that our State Legislators who also collect Big Fat Pensions wrote such nonsense in the Constituion and got away with it.

Many people and business are leaving the State of Illinios now. The environment of living here or doing business here is no longer resident and business friendly. It is only government employee friendly. They made all the rules to favor themselves thinking our pockets are bottomless.

I think in this depression, even government officials are realizing that the taxpayers pockets are not bottomless. Many state and city governments are implementing pay-cuts and/or lay-offs. Naperville seems to be in denial. They are even giving pay raises.

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City Manager Doug Krieger admitted the elimination of 47 positions last year was not felt whatsoever by the residents. That was a VERY TRUE and ACCURATE statement. But it also translates to mean that we were carrying a lot of EXCESS FAT on our pay-rolls and pension-rolls without even realizing it. If that is not INCOMPETENCE, I do not know what is! In fairness or unfairness,(whichever way you want to look at it) to Mr. Krieger, Double Dipping Assistant City Manager Robert Marshall was running the town when we had this first layer of EXCESS FAT uncovered. I suspect there are more LAYERS OF FAT to go. How many more layers I don't know...but more layers CERTAINLY!

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OK, Mr. Krieger, what are you going to do with those BUILDING INSPECTORS. Don't be so sure I will not one day show up in City Chambers, take the podium, and put the spot light on you. I have one or two council members that I know will find a way to keep me on the podium for more than 3 minutes so I can be HEARD PROPERLY.

Stop playing this Establishment Game, Mr. Krieger. It will not work. Once the kitchen gets real hot, the Establishment will blame you for everything and you will be scapegoated to Florida with former Manager Peter Burchard. I guess his son is now appealing for his pension and severance....lol...!

You need to speak up and act now. Don't let the City Council robot you and make a fool of you. You are a very educated man. You must know that tax increases must be off the table when residents are losing jobs(9-11% unemployment), being underemployed(17%), and taking pay cuts and benefit cuts. You must at some point show us you have a conscience, Mr. Krieger, and have not been roboted by the Stepford Wives Council.

CIJ,

I am already on record as stating that, in this current economic climate, the city should cut employee salaries before it considers raising taxes. I am also on record as being opposed to city council members receiving any salary, not just pensions (I made a post about this a few months back). That said, I think a city council member would have to serve quite a few terms before he or she would be eligible for a full, 75% pension on his/her $10K salary.

As for pension returns, you are right that the market has been lousy over the last decade. You are also right that there is no guarantee that it will get better. But even those of us who don't have guaranteed pensions need the market to get better if we're ever going to retire. If it does not improve in the next 10-15 years, then I think all bets are off in regard to pensions. But we are not at that point yet, and right now the problem is still manageable assuming decent market conditions in the future. Historically, the stock market has delivered the best returns over the long term, and the pension fund managers are right to have some of the portfolio invested there.

-JQP

JQP,

IF they can collect 75% in pension on that $10,000 salary, $7500 ain't chopped liver when it is added to their regular retirement benefits and Social Security. (I don't know the formula for the City Council Pension.)

Keep in mind they only work a few hours a month in 2 sessions and some months decide to take one of the sessions off as they did last month. The council members rarely read their 500-900 page packets and sometimes pick them up the night before the session or right before the session. That could be a reason why City Staff can get away with murder in their wasteful spending.

Plus, I recall reading they get FULL HEALTH BENEFITS for these few hours a month. FULL HEALTH BENEFITS are going for 12k or more if you are healthy. If any of them have pre-existing conditions the price is way north of there even if they could get health insurance from a carrier. That benefit is even better than their pensions.

They surely are not working because they care about the TAXPAYER who is being SCREWED ROYALLY.

Not one spoke out against TAX INCREASES FULLY. Most want lots of tax increases and some small tax increases. But they all wanted TAX INCREASES.

In Oak Brook, all the council were against tax increases even though they do not even have a PROPERTY TAX in that Village.

They could have jacked up the sales tax 1/2% to 1% and avoided laying 14.75 village employees off. But the elders there are wise and chose not to increase sales tax even though it would mostly have been paid by out of towners.

I suspect they realize if they raise sales taxes, customers will go to Yorktown Shopping Center and they will lose a lot more than the percentage increase.

Our folks have a 9.75% sales tax in downtown Naperville and want to raise taxes. I guess they want to be like Cook County and Chicago and be in double digits.

Cook County and Chicago are corrupt. We all know that. They are ruled by cronyism and corruption. Why do we strive to be like them?
Why can't we be like Oak Brook or Hinsdale and watch out for the taxpayer?

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JQP, Do you think our City Officials are acting properly by finding ways to increase taxes instead of reducing EXCESS FAT and GOVERNMENT WASTE?

Do you think it is fair that City Employees get raises while Private Employees are getting no raises or even salary and wages reductions?

Do you think it is fair that the average private civilian is retiring with $45,000 in his 401(k) while we pay city employees more than that in retirement in ONE YEAR?

According to Time Magazine, dated Oct 19, half of Americans can not even save a penny and do not even have a 401(k). It is hard to save when employers no longer pay for their health insurance. I believe we still pay for a majority of the health insurance of our city employees.

At the current 1.5% interest rates, if you pay a retiree 100k a year in annual pension retirement benefits, that is the equivalent of giving him a JUMBO CD worth almost $7,000,000 dollars. Do you think, Mr. JQP, we should be given our retirees $7 million the day they retire at age 52? Do you understand this is what is contributing to our Pension Fiasco? Do you understand this is the reason we can not put a dent in the deficit and why it continues to get worse while the State orders us to make it better?

Our City Officials must have an escape plan and escape route when the PENSION FUNDS finally IMPLODE just as Pension Fund Manager Gary Menconi from Woodridge stated so succintly. We the taxpayers will be left holding the bag that is now already missing $120 million dollars! The BAG IS EMPTY! The money is gone!

And don't tell me that 1.5% is not a good measure. If we go with stock investments according to the same Time Magazine article $100,000, 10 years ago declined to about $73,320 dollars today. That means a little less than a negative (-3.0%) return on investment.

If we would have kept all Pension Money in JUMBO CDs and not wasted $3,500,000 on investement fees the last 10 years, we actually would have had a better return on investment the last decade. Think about that JQP! Why do we pay these investment advisors who appear borderline useless? Can not the City Manager who has a Master's Degree in Accounting and Finance make sure we have the right percentage of government bonds to stocks? Why can't the legal department help him since they farm all their Civil Rights cases out and appear to have plenty of free time on their hands?

And don't assume the market is coming back. In Japan the market never came back after that 1991 bust. America has the same exact problems as Japan if you study history (as I do even though I am not a historian like Moderator Magee) and I seriously doubt the market is coming back for decades.

I am on record predicting something vicious is going to happen to this stock market on or before Oct 31, 2009. It is just a hunch I have and I know the market could keep taking hot air much longer than that before it bursts due to irrational exhuberance amongst investors.

CIJ wrote:

I am one who thinks all the candidates are the same. I have voted before in all elections. But once they get seated, I noticed they all become the same. I think once they are told they qualify for a pension, they all become PRO-PENSION and don't care how much we have to borrow from China to make ends meet.

Maybe once they get elected they discover the issues on which they ran are quite a bit more complex than they had thought...or pretended. I seriously doubt any of our city council members are greatly motivated by the pension they might get from their $10K per year salaries.

By Chris Magee, moderator on October 13, 2009 1:07 AM
Perhaps people are happy with their local government, or not mad enough to go out and vote, or they think all the candidates are the same.

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Moderator Magee,

If I were to guess, I would say it is the latter 2.

People really do have to get MAD enough to want to be involved or go out and vote. I am working every day on getting them MAD for good underlying reasons.

I am one who thinks all the candidates are the same. I have voted before in all elections. But once they get seated, I noticed they all become the same. I think once they are told they qualify for a pension, they all become PRO-PENSION and don't care how much we have to borrow from China to make ends meet. Or how much our children and grandchildren will suffer trying to pay this debt and the interest expense tied to it back to China. The interest expense is running at $500,000,000 per month these days to China alone on foreign debt and growing exponentially.

If you get a chance try to read that Time Magazine Article on 401(k)s. It is so depressing to read how much distance exists between government employees retiring and private citizens retiring.

If these private citizens could put two and two together they would be MAD as H@LL. But most of them can't put 2 and 2 together. They don't see the overall picture. The government wants them in the dark.

It is just shocking that 85 year old men are working at Sam's Warehouse as greeters while they can barely stand up so our POs and FFs can retire at age 52 with 80k and 90k of pension money coming from that poor greeter at Sam's. No one seems to get it on this blog site.

But I think they will all eventually get it sooner than later. If not we will have that IMMINENT IMPLOSION!

CIJ

Moderator Magee,

Do you ever feel we live in a sleepy town where people just want to sleep all the time after working?

Or maybe in a town where they are so busy being soccer Moms and Dads that they do not have time to be involved in politics or checking on government in any form or fashion.

I guess 82% of the residents won't even take 5 minutes of time to vote for their local officials every 2 or 4 years. That one really amazes me. That is why I believe the Establishment can do as it pleases and wishes. Apathy to the highest degree exists in our beloved Naperville.

Sometimes, I think a nuclear bomb would not even wake Naperville up out of its coma. Maybe, I should stop trying.

Do you have any thoughts of this highly unusual "sleepiness" in Naperville, Moderator Magee?

CIJ

Anonymous on October 12, 2009 12:41 PM

I believe you and I are in agreement concerning the value of the library. As for CD's vs vinyl - I do think that some vinyl recordings sound better but cd's win out for me for the reasons you stated. Don't even get me started on Ipods

Book,

CDs are less expensive to produce, hold more data than vinyl and made high quality reproduction of sound available to everyone by storing the music in a digital format vs the existing analog format.

The debate on the "warmth" of analog vs. digital reproduction and which encoding and compression schemes are best is endless. IMHO CDs were a step forward in quality and availability.

So far, no LCD or CRT has approached the readability, portability, ruggedness or quality of print on paper, some print and paper better than others. For academic settings, instant access to lots of information does have value so there is a market for the display tablets.

As to the Library, this is the government service most used by Naperville residents and a great low-cost source of civic pride. While you can purchase equipment that will allow you to make a cup of coffee anywhere, it is no substitute for a good coffee shop with great service; like Starbucks, Naperville's Library experience is worth every penny.

I suspect that a little more research into the budget will yield that the Librarians are in fact much less expensive to keep on staff than many may think.

By no means is the economy out of the woods, and across the board pay freezes would demonstrate minimal sanity on the part of our school boards and local governments.


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By Book Lover on October 11, 2009 8:25 AM
While still a niche market, vinyl albums are still out there and still sought out by music lovers. CD's took over because they were cheaper and easier for the recording companies to mass produce.

By Anonymous on October 10, 2009 10:31 PM

CIJ

After pouring through this budget I no longer agree that a 10% across the board budge cut is in order. I have revised my estimate and now believe that at least a 15% and more like a 20% cut is fully possible and achievable. I base this on the following:

1. Concurrence with you on several observation you have made and which I have confirmed. More about this later.

I can not disagree with someone who agrees with me. I would love to hear more details. Don't worry about long posts if you read 15-20 books a month. We can handle the reading. The writing is what takes long.

2. City departments operate as independent silo's and there is all kind of duplicity and waste across multiple departments. Way more about this later, but the basic idea is the city simply has to consolidate certain positions and adopt a matrix management approach to many, many positions.

It sounds like you may be a Corporate CEO who may have experience in cost cutting and making budgets balance. We really need people like you to help and provide additional perspectives.

3. There are way, way too many chiefs and far too many indians. The number of bosses is out of proportion with the number of people that they actually supervise. In some departments it is almost like everyone is a chief and there aren't any indian doing the work.

I bet you are right. In the Building Department probably everyone is a Chief and there are no Indians as Indians are no longer needed since development has been halted. This department could be run with a skeleton staff as the town is 98.5% developed and there will NOT be a resumption of significant development. Let us sell our building inspectors to Plainfield and collect a Head Hunter's Fee for saving them the time to hunt some down for their future development. We would also get them off our pay-rolls and pension-rolls before they vest in pensions after 20 years of employment and cost us an arm and a leg. We already have $132.7 in accrued actuarial pension liability deficits if you include IMWF employees. We seem to love all our employees and let them hang around like adult children who never leave the home so they can VEST and be SECURE while we go broke supporting them.

Cutting the firefighters/paramedics by 50% will give those we retain much more experience as they will be out on twice as many calls. Experience is the best teacher for life saving procedures that need to be taken in the field on the spur of the moment. We may lose a minute or two in response time but we are sure to get highly experienced FFs to help us. Maybe Naperville can require all civilians to take a CPR class to make up for this one to two minute delay in response time. It will save us $15.55 million a year or $311 per household in real estate taxes. Keep in mind the majority of residents will never need an ambulance or fire engine even once in their life times. I have never used either so far...touch wood! Defribillators are coming down in price and those who own McMansions should consider owning one before putting on an addition or remodeling the basement if safety is a major concern and it should be. When time is of essence and there is no neck or backbone injury, sometimes throwing someone in a car and driving him/her to the Emergency Room can be quicker than waiting 5 -7 minutes for paramadics to arrive. As they say, if there is a WILL there is always a WAY!

4. Not nearly enough outsourcing going on. Not nearly enough managers just saying we simply don't need to do this anymore. For example there used to be a Social Worker on staff that was cut. For what is anyones guess. There are many more opportunities just like this to outsource, eliminate, or otherwise reduce staff.

The Fire Dept. comes to mind. With all the improvements in flame resistant materials, sprinkler systems, alarm detectors, smoke detectors we are still using 1960 standards for our staffing purposes. Most fire fighters play computer war games, watch TV, surf the net, play basketball, cook gourmet meals and whatever else for the majority of each day. If you want to argue for maximum response time why not argue for 30 fire stations instead of 5. Surely that will allow fire fighters to come in 4 minutes instead of 7 minutes but are we as taxpayers willing to pay $93 million for the Fire Department instead of $31 million when we have a $14.1 million budget deficit. That would give us a $76.1 million budget deficit if we wanted to have an OVERKILL RESPONSE TIME. At some point reason has to prevail. Maybe the City should buy each resident a DEFRIBILLATOR and teach us how to use it and we can cut RESPONSE TIME TO SECONDS instead of MINUTES at a fraction of the cost. (This may be unreasonable but I am trying to think out of the box in hopes of getting City Officials to think out of the box and develop some serious solutions to cut the budge and make ends meet.)


5. Everyone complains about the size of the police and fire department which are two of the largest departments. A sleeper that slid in and surprised me was the library because it has almost as many staff as the fire department. Surprise. Surprise.

I think Encyclopedias in a library make no sense and are never used anymore. I am for an E-Library with no Brick and Mortar Structure. This will save us millions and millions. You can get use to reading e-books instead of hard cover books. I actually converted and love reading books on my computer when I have time.

6. Based on just the salaries and benefits some of the department average salaries are just unbelievable. Every department, one by one needs to be placed under this microscope.

I have been saying that for 3.5 years. They got there by always pointing out the highest salaries in the nation and saying we are underpaid. You forgot to mention the high pensions which are a result of the high salaries creating a total estimated $132.7 million accrued actuarial pension liability deficit.


Ok, now my turn to apologize for running on too long. I do promise to keep my future posts much shorter.

No need to apologize. Short posts will not bring solutions. Long posts will at least present, suggest and recommend solutions. The city's budget is a confusing, disorganized, disheveled and a non-sequential mess of 364 pages. How can we tackle it with short posts? Keep up the good work. It is nice to see a different perspective presented even though we have much in common and our goals are apparently the same or at least similar.

I understand you don't like my call for 10% cuts and want to see 15-20% cuts which you state are achievable. You may be right. Let us not shock our City Officials and feed them the medicine slowly. Let us go for 10% this year, 5% next year and than 5% the following year. Let us give them time to think, comprehend and absorb. Will County Forest Preserve just took pride in not only balancing the budget but reducing it to 900k less than last year. They cut and cut and of course they gave their employees NO RAISES. I can not believe the City of Naperville is giving raises. This is really INSANITY in a recession/depression economy. Only in Stepford Wives Town, USA can something like this happen. I guess these robots are programmed and can only think inside of a box. City OFFICIALS in plain English are being selfish and watching out for themselves and not the TAXPAYERS.

CIJ


Correction to my post at 8:25AM - I meant to say that the all electronic format library is not going to appear soon.

CIJ - I seriously doubt that the all electronic format library is going to disappear any time soon. Newspapers are failing due to high costs and lack of revenue. Libraries operate a bit differently. While electronic versions of books have been around for a few years (and I have used them), there is still along way to go to make them user friendly and accessible. Some people said the same thing about vinyl record albums when CD's first appeared. While still a niche market, vinyl albums are still out there and still sought out by music lovers. CD's took over because they were cheaper and easier for the recording companies to mass produce.

While it may be that someday there will be no bricks and mortar library as we know it today, it is my opinion that they will still exist when our grandchildren are at retirement age.

By Anonymous on October 11, 2009 12:43 AM
One fo the great features of a library is books - amazing CIJ that you think that books will become obsolete. yes - I know about e-books but not every thing is available in e-form and I know if no e-book provider that lends like the library does. As I read 15-20 books a month, I think money spent on the library is a great value.

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I am no expert but I believe the paper form of newspapers and books will be eliminated some time in the future.

Look at how video stores are nearly instinct because you can download movies on the internet or through your cable or satellite TV.

Naperville may one day have an INTERNET LIBRARY instead of a BRICK and MORTAR LIBRARY.

You will still be able to read your 15-20 books, but as e-books on the internet.

I suspect this will be much less expensive than the B @ M Library.

A Brick and Mortar Libary will not be able to compete with an e-Library.

From a cost perpective, taxpayers are going to demand the lesser cost. Plus don't forget our City Officials would rather have a parking deck in the DT instead of a library.

Or they could implode the library and sell the land that it sits on for $14.1 million and eliminate the budget deficit in its entirety.

CIJ

By Experienced on October 11, 2009 12:58 AM
By Citizen Investigative Journalist on October 10, 2009

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This must be an isolated instance where the unincorporated resident does not live in the rural Naperville Fire Protection District. The independent Fire Protection District levies taxes for fire and ambulance service and then by intergovernmental agreement pays that money over to the city fire department to service its residents. The city shows about $900,000 in revenue coming from the Fire Protection District in Fiscal 2008-09.

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All I know is this resident lives in the unincorporated area of Naperville and has Dupage Police Protection.

She called 911 for an ambulance for one of her children and was sent a bill for 900 dollars which she was shocked to get but said she would pay.

Maybe this is one of the isolated incidents you describe. It is not easy to understand all that goes on in government. I wish government would just cut 10% of all their budgets and leave us alone as far as higher taxation.

Are we the taxpayers going to have to pay this $20.2 million that was lost in the Police and Fire Pension Funds that you uncovered, Experienced assuming it never comes back?

Or do the POs and FFs have to come up with it through additional contributions without our help?

I suspect it is the former, unfortunately.

CIJ

By Citizen Investigative Journalist on October 10, 2009 11:42 PM

NFD does not perform free services for non-paying residents. I know when an incorporated resident in Naperville had to call for a Naperville ambulance, he was billed 900 bucks....and in my opinion properly and fairly since he does not pay Naperville taxes but Dupage Taxes.

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This must be an isolated instance where the unincorporated resident does not live in the rural Naperville Fire Protection District. The independent Fire Protection District levies taxes for fire and ambulance service and then by intergovernmental agreement pays that money over to the city fire department to service its residents. The city shows about $900,000 in revenue coming from the Fire Protection District in Fiscal 2008-09.

One fo the great features of a library is books - amazing CIJ that you think that books will become obsolete. yes - I know about e-books but not every thing is available in e-form and I know if no e-book provider that lends like the library does. As I read 15-20 books a month, I think money spent on the library is a great value.

Bloggers,

Sorry my last post ran away from me so I apologize for any mistakes as it was not edited or reviewed.

Anyway, I don't want to be attacking the wrong Anonymous. I assume there are 2 here since one capitalizes Anonymous and one does not.

I still think handles need to be chosen by each blogger.

Otherwise, if I am counter attacking an Anonymous PLEASE don't assume it is you unless you are the one who started the attacks.


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Moderator,
I don't see why it would be so difficult to ask people to have a handle for each post....at least you would know which anonymous you are addressing. Without a handle, you just don't know who you are talking to and who is talking to you and you could easily end up cussing out the wrong anonymous who never cussed you out in the first place.

I have enough enemies on your blog site and do not wish for anymore. I don't want to create any more accidentally.

I hope you can institute a policy of a name for each post....any name but a chose name other than anonymous which is being used by way to many bloggers.

Thank you,

CIJ

By Anonymous on October 10, 2009 7:07 PM
May be you should have asked your L-W friend about how often L-W has to ask Naperville (and other neighboring towns) for an ambulance to help cover their calls.

EVERYTIME L-W SHUTS DOWN AN AMBULANCE THEY HAVE TO CALL a NEIGHBORING TOWN TO HELP COVER THEIR CALLS. GOOD FOR THE L-W TAXPAYER, JUST MORE MONEY OUT OF YOUR POCKET.

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I will ask my L-W friend that question next time I see him.

L-ambulance for late evenings/early mornings they still have 2 or 3 that are W has 115 firefighters who are also paramedics. If they shut down an not shut down.

I doubt they would have to call another dept. for help unless they had 3 or more calls at the same time which I assume is extremely rare or else they would not have shut an ambulance for the graveyard shift if there was heavy demand.

NFD does not perform free services for non-paying residents. I know when an incorporated resident in Naperville had to call for a Naperville ambulance, he was billed 900 bucks....and in my opinion properly and fairly since he does not pay Naperville taxes but Dupage Taxes. They use Dupage Police but have no ambulance service so unincorporated residents are billed by emergency call. I guess if you are old and in frail health it does not pay to live in unincorporated Naperville unless you have insurance that will pay for these ambulance calls in full which is rare these days.

If L-W and Naperville do not have a reciprocal agreement we should be charging them if we help them....after all they are saving $400,000 in OT costs by shutting down that one Ambulance in the late evening/early mornings when calls are rare.

The picture you are painting is that the NFD is stupid. That they are allowing neighboring cities to close down ambulance services and picking up the tab for them. I really don't think our City Officials are that ignorant....at least I hope not.

We may have 4 ambulances in Naperville if I recall correctly. I once thought we had an ambulance in each Fire Station but some blogger said we only have 4 and I will take his word for now. If we have a tragedy that requires more than 4 ambulances, surrounding towns will and should help us on an exceptional basis as we help them based on reciprocal agreements or understandings. This is what I believe is happening.

Naperville can survive on 3 ambulances after midnight instead of 4. The response time will probably be the same for 75% of the residents and a minute or two slower for 25% of the residents. This apparently saves 400k a year. We can keep the ambulance closest to DT always operational since you never know when an out-of-towner will fall on the sidewalk and bump his or head coming our of a bar...see it way too often.

I would rather see the service maintained and the fire fighters take a pay cut. In Lisle-Woodridge they refused to take pay-cuts and chose this path to participate in their budget cuts at least for the first stage of necessary cuts. They did not have an option to increase taxes as it was off the table both in Woodridge and Lisle, as it was off the table in Hinsdale and Oak Brook. Hindale I believe laid off 3 fire fighters when the union refused to take a pay cut....and one police officer.

Only Naperville Officials seem to always want increased taxes on the table as the solution to all problems.

I am proposing solutions that save money withhout reducing services.
City Employees from top to bottom do not like my solutions. They want pay raises, pension increases and only deep cuts in services so the taxpayer will say ouch and agree to increase their taxes so they can continue to be spoiled and pampered.

The city council has absolutely no backbone to stand up to the police and fire unions. That is the underlying problem with our tax mess in this town. Until we can get a City Council with a a spine, taxes will continue to skyrocket in this town.

For now our City Officials are lucky must residents are still deeply asleep. They may wake up when they receive their next real estate tax bills and see they are $693 dollars higher just because of the City of Naperville portion. This does not factor in any increases forthcoming from the schools, the park district, townships or Dupage County. Let us hope the other taxing bodies don't screw up as badly as Naperville. Historically, on a percentage basis, they have all been much better than Naperville. That is why I leave them alone for the most part. I always check the percentage increases from year to year on my real estate tax bill and in the last few years, Naperville has been the worse....up to 11% annual increases....more than twice that would be allowed if we repealed Home Rule.

As far as the Naperville Public Library, I think it will soon become obsolete just like newspapers. I have not been to a library in years except to read the Napergate Ads since the Napergate Website was closed down with the retirement of the Napergate Man. But almost everything else I ever wanted, I could find on the internet.

CIJ,

Thank you for your kind comments and shorter posts! I did not want to offend, rather make sure your message gets out and does some good.

Right now your longest post seems like a short story in comparison to what I did this evening and that is to sit down and actually read through all 364 pages of the mind numbing city budget. It is right up there on the city web site for anyone to see. Yes, 364 pages. Most of it nothing but a lot of fluff that could better be used to make a lot of pillows for the homeless, but still they managed to write almost one page of budget material for every day in a calendar year! I wonder how many people are employed just to help write 364 pages of data that appear deliberately designed to stump even the best of investigator from putting two and two together in order to figure out what they really are spending and on what?

A couple of important points came out of trying desperately to stay awake through 364 pages of otherwise pretty boring stuff:

We have got an almost $400,000,000 budget in this city.

We have 1,042 employees which lands the City of Naperville as the 9th largest employer in the city. That strikes me as being pretty weird alone.

Across the board the budget clearly demonstrates that city executives are not voluntarily doing what they should be doing to curtail expenses and reduced staff.

After pouring through this budget I no longer agree that a 10% across the board budge cut is in order. I have revised my estimate and now believe that at least a 15% and more like a 20% cut is fully possible and achievable. I base this on the following:

1. Concurrence with you on several observation you have made and which I have confirmed. More about this later.
2. City departments operate as independent silo's and there is all kind of duplicity and waste across multiple departments. Way more about this later, but the basic idea is the city simply has to consolidate certain positions and adopt a matrix management approach to many, many positions.
3. There are way, way too many chiefs and far too many indians. The number of bosses is out of proportion with the number of people that they actually supervise. In some departments it is almost like everyone is a chief and there aren't any indian doing the work.
4. Not nearly enough outsourcing going on. Not nearly enough managers just saying we simply don't need to do this anymore. For example there used to be a Social Worker on staff that was cut. For what is anyones guess. There are many more opportunities just like this to outsource, eliminate, or otherwise reduce staff.
5. Everyone complains about the size of the police and fire department which are two of the largest departments. A sleeper that slid in and surprised me was the library because it has almost as many staff as the fire department. Surprise. Surprise.
6. Based on just the salaries and benefits some of the department average salaries are just unbelievable. Every department, one by one needs to be placed under this microscope.

Ok, now my turn to apologize for running on too long. I do promise to keep my future posts much shorter.

By anonymous on October 10, 2009 6:19 PM
CIJ,
That's what I thought. WHINE, WHINE, WHINE but when asked to give a solution it's suddenly not your job. This town needs less whiners and more people that provide solutions to problems!!


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Hey Buddy,

I provided many recommendations and potential solutions including my 22 points towards the beginning of this blog site that you complained were too long to read. You want detailed solutions but you don't read them because of your short mental span....your apparent lack of ability to concentrate or comprehend.

I am not employed by the city and do not have the authority to implement or execute the solutions I recommend. If you had a half a brain you would realize that.

So if anyone is whining and crying here, it is you. You almost sound like a baby on a bottle. if you knew how to read, you would see I made many specific recommendations.

The Moderator was not kidding when he said he was running a Kindergarten Class. He has got a bunch of bloggers literally sucking on their thumbs who can not even spell their names....so they use the computer generated Anonymous for their names....lol...

In summary I have provided tons of solutions the last 3.5 years. The city just does not want to implement or execute anything that means cost cutting especially if it pertains to wages and pensions. They want to increase taxes to preserve and improve their wages and pensions.

And you have provided no recommendations or potential solutions just like City Officials. NOTHING! NOTHING! NOTHING!


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Ps. And your attempt to bait me as if you were a friendly blogger failed miserably. Your smelled worse than a raccoon so it was easy to spot you. Stop playing games. It is time to be and act like an adult if you are in fact one.

YES, Lisle woodridge does and has closed an ambulance when their staffing falls short. The problem is that neighboring towns have been having to pick up their short falls. May be you should have asked your L-W friend about how often L-W has to ask Naperville (and other neighboring towns) for an ambulance to help cover their calls.
YES, L-W is saving money by shutting down an ambulance BUT you as a Naperville taxpayer are picking up the cost. It costs money every time that ambulance is on the road and L-W is getting it free from Naperville.
EVERYTIME L-W SHUTS DOWN AN AMBULANCE THEY HAVE TO CALL a NEIGHBORING TOWN TO HELP COVER THEIR CALLS. GOOD FOR THE L-W TAXPAYER, JUST MORE MONEY OUT OF YOUR POCKET.

CIJ,
That's what I thought. WHINE, WHINE, WHINE but when asked to give a solution it's suddenly not your job. This town needs less whiners and more people that provide solutions to problems!!

Anonymous,

I am not paid to decide how each department should cut 10% across the board so we can avoid increased taxes. I think it is a great proposal I made and many on this blog site agreed with it.

Why don't you ask Double Dipping Asst. Manager Robert Marshall who worked at the NPD for 30 years to find ways to reduce waste in the POLICE DEPT.

1. He should find a way to elimiate the entire 3 million in OT for starters. Let the Last Fling and Pig Fest pay for their own security with their own proceeds.

2. He can suggest we stop sending 14 police officers to sit as potted plants in jury boxes collecting OT while 300 residents march towards the judge to plead guilty to $75 dollar traffic tickets. Who cares if one pleads innocent. We can obtain a continuance and deal with him or her at a later time or date as Downers Grove does. (JFTR, I was told DG is in fact considering shutting down a Fire Station by a Lisle-Woodridge FF so the blogger who mentioned this may in fact be credible.)

3. He can stop using school police officers in the DOWNTOWN uselessly on late weekday summer nights and instead use them to reduce the NPD OT. You can not justify using 17 police officers on one intersection on a Monday in the summer and only 3 on busy Fall Weekends. This has nothing to do with security but keeping officers paid due to possible UNION stipulations while other rake in OT while the taxpayers take it up the WHATEVER! (Sorry Moderator, but I did manage to avoid the W Word.)

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The new Fire Chief also needs to find out where he can make cuts that amount to 10% of his operating budget

1. He needs to find out what 5 least strategically located Fire Stations he can close during the midnight shift and reduce Fire Fighter's pay accordingly and proportionately.

2. Lisle-Woodridge shut down one ambulance in the evening about 6 months ago that is saving the fire district 400k in OT plus expenses according to a fireman in that district who told me so a few days ago. They still have a 1 rating while we only have a 2 rating. Excess fat can be found anywhere and everywhere if you want to look for it. The new Fire Chief has to step up to the plate and think out of the box. He can not be like Chief David Dial stuck in a box forever.

3. The L-W fire fighter told me there are hardly any calls on the graveyard shift compared to the day time and evening shifts especially on weekdays when almost everyone is sleeping. Some people do die in their sleep, but there is nothing much you can do to help someone who died peacefully in his sleep while his loved ones were also all sleeping.
________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

It is ridiculous that you are asking me to lay out a detailed cost cutting proposal for our City Officials. They get paid handsomely to watch our expenses. They have been derelict in their duties. It is time for them to step it up....not ME!

They are extremely lazy. Everytime they get themselves in trouble they look for ways to increase taxes. They are too lazy to look for the EXCESS FAT that is rampant in City Hall even though they are paid very well with Big Fat Pensions awaiting them after 30 years of service.

Do your share, Anonymous, instead of worrying about what I am doing. You sound like a Monday Quarterback. Stop being lazy and expect others to do your work for you. Your taxes care going up just like mine! Get serious and try to restrain your uncalled for and classless mocking.

As the Moderator has always preached, focus your remarks on the important subjects at hand and not your fellow bloggers. Stop acting like a Kindergarten Child. Am I safe to assume you are older than 5 years old? Also don't be a wimp and hide behind Anonymous if you are going to be a SMART-A-LIC on this blog site. People like you are a dime a dozen on this blog site.

CIJ,
Your posts ramble on more than Firstenau at a council meeting.
With your long postings why don't you rip one off the SOLVES the $14.1 million problem. Keep in mind you can't raise taxes as you are opposed to this. Be specific with your cuts! What services are gone? How many cops do you lay off? Close what fire station? ETC..

By Anonymous on October 10, 2009 1:32 PM
CIJ,

I've got to tell you I love to hear what you have to say. If you can keep it to 1 or 2 paragraphs I'm sure more people will read what you have to say. Maybe try to only cover 1 or 2 points in each post instead of the shotgun approach? Just thought you'd like to know... otherwise keep on with the good work.

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Thanks for your very kind words and constructive cricticism.

My last 3 posts were really relatively short and to the point.

I think if you want to generate support you have to give some details to the bloggers as to where our fiscally irresponsible government officials are wasting money. If you can't show them where it is being wasted, people will not support you.

My posts are written more directly to the government officials than to the bloggers. If I did not have factual knowledge that City Officials and Council Members were reading my posts and even disseccting them, believe me I would not be writing. I have a life and better things to do than write for the sake of writing.

My last posts showed how other towns are reducing expenses instead of increasing taxes. Hopefully, they showed our City Officials how ridiculous they were to even be thinking of raising any taxes in this economic depression.

Oak Brook had a great sales tax base. They got hit hard and they just laid off 14.75 people. They did not even consider having a property tax like Naperville. They are proud not to have one. They brag about not having one. Our City Officials do not take pride in reducing wages and expenses. They take pride in giving raises, inflating salaries, and keeping employees employed until retirement in order they can get their BIG FAT PENSIONS from a pension system that has a 120 million accrued actuarial pension liability deficit.

When you have employees, many of whom, are apparently hired based on a probable CRONYISTIC SYSTEM, the intent of City Officials is always to take care of friends, family and whomever at taxpayer expense instead of watching out for the TAXPAYERS who pay their high salaries and in some cases both salaries and pensions while working on second pensions, AKA Double and Triple Dipping. Milking the taxpayers dry in case someone does not know what I am talking about.

Perfect example is how they are holding on to the Buidling Inspectors when there is no BUILDING going on in Naperville. How in the world can we need the same amount of inspectors now as we needed during the BUILDING BOOM when we were growing 5-10% PER YEAR?!? Imagine that for a second while trying not to worry about the length of my posts! Worry about how you are being NAILED over the HEAD on your real estate tax bill by the unnecessary retention of these BIs....little constructive criticism back at you, my friend. I hope you don't mind.

Thanks for reading my posts!

Pass the word on to your Naperville Neighbors and Friends. Ask them to write so I don't have to write so much and spend more quality time with my family, dog and new kitten.

Best Regards,
CIJ

CIJ,

I've got to tell you I love to hear what you have to say. Reality is I don't have time to read through posts that are that are as mind numbingly long as they have been recently. I hate to skip over any posts but when they go on and on and on like they have been recently I just don't have any choice.

If you can keep it to 1 or 2 paragraphs I'm sure more people will read what you have to say. Maybe try to only cover 1 or 2 points in each post instead of the shotgun approach?

Just thought you'd like to know... otherwise keep on with the good work.

By anonymous on October 9, 2009 6:25 PM

To the above Anonymous,

Any City Council Member who ever considered a tax increase should be voted out of office....considering tax increases is borderline insanity in these economic conditions.

Due to the building of McMansions the last 5 years and much commercial development, we got a major tax boost from these new developments.

Most new houses built in Naperville the last years were a million or more. In some cases the land alone was one million.

The fact that our tax base grew exponentially and we have nothing to show for it, shows our City Council are like alcoholic shoppers. They will find a way to spend any amount of money we give them and then ask for a new credit card.

I am ashamed of any Council Member who asked for any kind of tax increase this year or any year.

Oak Brook could have broke the ice and started property taxes, but they were determined not to and did not. It is really amazing how they look for every reason not to increase taxes while we look for every reason to increase taxes.

I think we have a sick culture in Stepford Wives City, USA. I think the sickness is passed on from generation to generation of the Establishment Folks who run this town.

I don't think I will ever vote again in any local elections since all the candidates are from the same mold. They talk the talk and can not walk the walk.

As you said with Broadhead we need help. She really appears to have loose screws and bearings. I have never seen someone ask for a recess with one item left on the agenda. It just shows her mind is not in the right place. I really don't understand how the voters elected her or any of our council members. They are all a very sad bunch unless one stood up and CONDEMNED HIGHER TAXES and I somehow missed it.

CIJ

So who on the council has historically been against tax increases and for cutting the size of government...
Wherli and Firstenau. Our hopes are with these two. Great.

Krause made the suggestion at a workshop to INCREASE real estate taxes to cover the gap! This is the same career politician that rallied the TEA party people by saying "no more taxes!" and pleading for smaller government. Wish I could trust this professional doublespeaker. He will say whatever the person in front of him wants to hear. He belongs with the Dem's in Springfield!

Pradel is in over his head with the financial stuff. Cheerleading yes, tight budget oversight we'd be better off with a talking parakeet. (sorry to all you talking parakeets.)

Feseler is a maybe. Ya never know with this guy what he's up too. Kinda like a crazy uncle at a party.

Broadhead. HELP!

Miller is too focused on being the next mayor that he can't read the writing on the wall of his political career failing.

Well, looks like higher taxes are on the way. YAY!



The Village of Oak Brook is a very unique and exciting place to live and work. Property owners pay no property tax to the Village, as Village services are funded primarily by sales tax receipts. Superior services, including excellent police protection and state-of-the-art emergency medical services, are provided to Oak Brook's business community and to our residents.


http://www.oak-brook.org/


========================================================================================================================================

Oak Brok has no property tax.

Sales tax revenue was down in Oak Brook, like Naperville and the rest of the USA.

Rather than implementing a property tax to supplemant the loss of sales tax revenues, they cut 14.75 positions in the Village and many other expenses.

They did not even consider creating a new tax which they easily could have. They take pride in not increasing taxes and not having a PROPERTY TAX. They require landlords to construct their own parking decks. They don't subsidize them at the expense of the resident homeowners as we do.

Neighboring Hinsdale laid off some folks to, including 3 fire fighters. I think they understand we need less fire fighters these days because of air bags, smoke detectors, fire alarms, sprinkler systems and flame resistant building materials. They are just not going to let FFs hang on to collect a Big Fat Pension while taxpayers suffer in this borderline depression.

Hinsdale is a very affluenent community and well educated. No one can tell me those residents don't care for their Public Safety. They even laid off a cop or two despite bordering Cook Cowboy County.

If Oak Brook which only has about 9,000 residents can lay off 14.75 employees, we should be able to lay off 16 times that amount or about 240 employees including 50-100 fire fighters who only work a few hours a day at most.

Let us not forget about those building inspectors who are just getting paid to HANG ON for the boom to resume even though we are 98.5% developed and the boom may never resume in NaperPerfectVille. Lay them off please, City Manager Doug Krieger. Send them south to Plainfield. Why in Heaven's Sake are you giving them raises? Do you need a mental examination? If so, visit a psychiatrist soon and stop worrying about Mr. Huber's mental condition. Worry about your own for now since you are making irrational decisions!!! Worry about the health of our community. That is why we hired you. Not to diagnose Mr. Huber's mental condition which appears to be fine as he can live on $3000 a year and never complains despite being on "fumes." May God Bless him and keep him warm and well fed this winter.

The only town I could find in the suburbs during a brief search considering tax increases instead of payroll and expense cuts was Naperville. I always thought those folks in City Hall were fiscally irresponsible. I use to call them "drunken sailors" but I stopped since a blogger suggested I can garner better support for our tax cause if I called them FISCALLY IRRESPONSIBLE.

Hopefully, the support is coming and the momentum will build. We shall wait and see how much pain the residents are willing to endure before they say ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!

CIJ

When a building as large as the Promenade is constructed without underground parking because it is "expensive" the taxpayers have to erect a parking garage for this building.

A parking garage can go for 20-25 million dollars not including the land which is several million an acre in the downtown area.

So for those who do not understand why the new McMansion Taxes have not reduced our average home real estate taxe bills, this is 1 of a 100 reasons that will help you understand the BIG PUZZLE, that I have been trying to unravel on this Sun Blog Site for nearly 3.5 years.

The building is owned by an Establishment Couple and the Establishment Folks in Power took care of their own. In underdeveloped 3rd world countries this is called CRONYISM. In Naperville this is caused "Business as Usual" and works quite well if the Brestal Law Firm is retained to manage and legalize the CRONYISM. I guess it is not enough that we have legalized Double and Triple Dipping in this Stepford Wives Town, USA!

Until the Naperville Sun helps wake up the sleepy residents of this town, the abuse of taxpayer money will continue unabated. However, City Officials are self-destructing as many residents have foreclosed, become bankrupt or left town leaving many homes either off the pay-roll or paying much less tax to lesser value due to foreclosure values being a fraction of former assessed valuations.

Sometimes, I think we are losing McMansion Residents to Oak Brook where the last time I checked they had no Municipal Real Estate Taxes. Yes, they have a nice sales tax base as we do, but I bet they have fiscally responsible folks running their City Hall.

CIJ

Taxes in Naperville and the state of Illinois are already too high. People and business are moving out as fast as possible due to excessive taxation. Any politician rising taxes must be run out of office. Enough is enough.

By Anonymous on October 8, 2009 11:16 PM
I have attached a link to this post for all of you that think cutting and/or closing fire stations at night is a good idea. The link will take you to an NBC report on kids and smoke alarms.... THIS VIDEO SHOULD BE A WAKE UP CALL.

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This video has nothing to do with how many fire stations have to be open at night.

I think the message here is kids should never be left alone in a home as many times they can not hear fire or smoke alarms.

A fire goes from ignition to flash over in less than 3 minutes according to the video. What fire department can really make it in 3 minutes? None, that I know.

Besides the regular smoke alarms we have one connected to Alarm Detection Systems that is 10 times as loud as the ones in the video. I recommend getting one to back up your existing smoke detectors if you don't have one My kids can hear that one but not the regular ones.

I really still think we should shut half the fire stations after midnight on weekdays. Since a fire reaches flash in 3 minutes, why does it matter if the fire department gets there in 6 or 9 minutes. If you are not out, you are dead anyway.

We are talking about protecting property at this point. Do we need to spend 31 million to protect 310k in property each year? It makes no sense especially since every Napervillian has insurance or should have insurance.

The message of this video is to have loud interconnected alarms and parents at home to wake the kids up in case of the rare event of a fire. That was an excellent message that had nothing to do with keeping too many fire stations open at night.

The bottom line is the fire department needs to cut 10% like every other department. If they don't like my proposals, they can present their own. But they must cut 10% and help us balance the budget.

They can not claim an EXEMPTION and expect other departments in City Hall to take it on the chin for them and themselves. That is unfair. The FD needs to be a good sport and take its proportionate share of cut backs. The taxpayers are taxed to the hilt. They can not afford any more taxes. Something has to give in the FD.

We don't need to be yelling fire in movies or on this blog site to scare people. We need to make reasonable cuts without jeaopardizing safety. The fire fighters need to stop being so stubborn and cooperate.

They need to understand the risk of foreclosure or bankruptcy for any Naperville family is 100 times that of a fire. By increasing taxes you increase those risks immeasurably.

CIJ

I have attached a link to this post for all of you that think cutting and/or closing fire stations at night is a good idea. The link will take you to an NBC report on kids and smoke alarms.... THIS VIDEO SHOULD BE A WAKE UP CALL.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-az6BooRLxw

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_PCzry-qJv4&feature=related

I have attached a link to this post for all of you that think cutting and/or closing fire stations at night is a good idea. The link will take you to an NBC report on kids and smoke alarms.... THIS VIDEO SHOULD BE A WAKE UP CALL.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-az6BooRLxw

Ken,

Keep in mind I never start with anyone.

I blog about the subjects in the thread heading.

Then I am attacked and ONLY sometimes counter-attack.

Here is an example of you wanting to start up with me despite saying nothing to you in a very long time.

The only irony exists in a fried figment of your fictitious imagination.

You would notice that on your own, if you had an ability to read or comprehend, something you have proven over time to lack in very large dozes.

Have a good one, Ken!

CIJ

PS. It should be obvious by now I am only confrontational to bloggers who are confrontational towards me. My issues are with City Hall and not my fellow bloggers. So I have no reason to initiate attacks against any blogger and generally don't as I like to stay focused like a radar on the fiscally irresponsible folks in City Hall. I am more worried about my next real estate tax bill. I have 2 kids in college and 2 kids I have to send to college soon and can not allow City Hall to continue abusing and squandering my tax money and that of other Naperville Residents. Unless taxes are curbed, like many of the natives who spoke up, I may have to retire eslewhere. My kids are only allowed to apply to in-state public universities so we can make ends meet. My real estate taxes rose from 3k to 12k in 20 years while living in the the same home. Why? Was inflation 200% the last 20 years or did I miss something. A 1000 bucks for real estate tax per month is enough for an average home in Naperville based on the services we receieve. I would like to see a 10% cut in taxes just for once instead of a 10% increase each year as I know the value of my home decreased at least 20% in the last 2 years if not more.

Also my property taxes on my apartment rental units increased substantially despite a decline in valuation. Almost every one of my tenants told me they would leave if I increased the rent and a few asked for rent reductions which I granted in order not to lose them. All these tax increases are taking away whatever I have left in gross profit margins. My tenants unlike city employees, have experienced pay-cuts and a few who lost their jobs are getting help from relatives to make ends meet. The city seems very insensitive to the plight of the residents in this town. I am really surprised Mayor Pradel, a once loving, caring and friendly man, has not stood up for the residents that he promised to represent and protect. It is as if the system gobbled him up and he lost all his senses and sensibilities. I GUESS THAT IS WHAT HAPPENS IN STEPFORD WIVES TOWN, USA. You get elected, they robot you, and guide you. Your brain and heart are removed during the robotic process just like in that famous Stepford Wives movie if you have never seen it.

Where does this all end? How far are we going to let our City Officials take this before we draw a line in the sand? They are basically milking us out of our very last pennies so they can get their pensions at age 52 and Double and Triple Dip with new jobs in different departments in City Hall. I call this legal CRONYISM and CORRUPTION tolerated by those who we elect to office the minute they become part of the ESTABLISHMENT RAILROADING SYSTEM.

I really have better things to do than attack anonymous bloggers many who don't even have a unique moniker in most cases. I may as well punch the air. Obviously, I have more serious issues to deal with such as preparing for the next April 15 TAX PROTEST at City Hall. Please spread the word so we can develop some strong momentum before that event. Talk to your neighbors and friends and write the date on your calender.

Enough Taxation without Representation! Join the Tea Party!

Thank you!

"Try to get in the spirit of cooperation instead of constant confrontation. Your style has become very old and stale, and should be unshelved and rectangulared in the nearest trash container.
CIJ"

Now there's one of the best examples of irony I have seen in a long time...

By John Q. Public on October 7, 2009 9:08 PM

You're the one playing with percentages by assuming that the entire loss came only from the stock portfolio. What basis do you have to make this assumption. Where's your proof, CIJ?

-JQP

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JQP,
It is very safe to assume the losses were all from the Stock Portfolio.

Government Bonds increase in value when market interest rates decline as has taken place in the last year. Government Bonds and Treasury Bills have an INVERSE relationship to rising or declining interest rates.

Most likely our non-stock government securities, T-Bills, and Bonds increased in value thus minimizing our stock security losses. This means that in reality our actual stock losses were not only $20.2 million but probably more. Since the investment losses were the NET of both our stock losses and the appreciation in our government bonds, amongst a few other factors such as municipal bonds, the stocks losses standing alone were most probably even greater than the $20.2 million that I have been mentioning.

Since you read financial books, you clearly understand what I am saying. In case you don't, review the INVERSE relationship between falling interest rates and appreciation in corresponding government bonds which apparently both our Police and Fire Pensions have quite a bit of according to you which I believe is true without researching. In other words, I am taking your word at face value.

I am not trying to play games, JQP. I am here to understand our city problems, get to the bottom of them and see if we can come up with a solution to help our fiscally irresponsible City Staff and Officials who refuses to think out of the box for a better way or method to their madness.

Forensic Accountant Experienced has dropped his verbal attacks and hostility towards me as I have dropped mine towards him. We appear to be at peace. Something I am thankful for and appreciate. He also wants solutions and is pounding pavements looking for them.

Why can't you drop your hostility and participate in finding solutions? Your constant attempts to slice and dice my comments in your repeated efforts to chop away at my credibility will be an exercise in futility. Trust me and read my post before this one for how I ripped and shredded that Anonymous Guy for questioning my credibility. I made minced meat out of him. Please don't afford me the opportunity to make minced meat out of you for I will be tempted to take advantage. Enough said for now!

Try to get in the spirit of cooperation instead of constant confrontation. Your style has become very old and stale, and should be unshelved and rectangulared in the nearest trash container.

Good night!

Thank You,

CIJ


FIREFIGHTERS' PENSION FUND
REVENUES, EXPENDITURES & CHANGES IN FUND BALANCE

Actual Actual Adopted 2007-08 2008-09 2009-10

Revenues
Property taxes 3,027,677 3,222,346 3,555,244
Employee contributions 1,504,303 1,601,317 1,445,000
Net investment income(loss)2,666,820 (9,808,248) 2,303,000


Link:

http://www.naperville.il.us/emplibrary/FY10AnnualOperatingBudget.pdf

PAGE 177.


This indicates the Fire Department Pension Fund alone lost $9,808,248 in Fiscal 2009.


Notice how in the above numbers the fire fighters are decreasing their contributions by $156,000 and we the taxpayers are increasing our contributions to them by $333,000 in that same exact one year period and over $528,000 in the last 2 years.


$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

POLICE PENSION FUND
REVENUES, EXPENDITURES & CHANGES IN FUND BALANCE

Actual Actual Adopted 2007-08 2008-09 2009-10

Revenues
Property taxes 2,848,172 3,215,764 3,664,630
Employee contributions 1,545,078 1,676,571 1,761,000
Net investment income 2,560,237 (10,369,827) 3,654,000

Link:

http://www.naperville.il.us/emplibrary/FY10AnnualOperatingBudget.pdf

PAGE 250

This indicates the Police Dept. Pension Fund alone lost $10,369,827 in Fiscal 2009.

Notice how in the above numbers the police officers are increasing their contributions by only $84,000 and we the taxpayers are increasing our contributions to them by $449,000 in that same exact one year period and over $816,000 in the last 2 years.


$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$


If you add both the Fire and Police numbers together, you get the $20.2 million in losses before the 350k in investment fees, I have been throwing around from memory after initially reading the report. And a bunch of incredible people on this blog site want to challenge my CREDIBILITY. I am really surprised the Moderator allows all the filth, attacks and lies that are posted on his Blog Site. Maybe, it is hard to control a Kindergarten Class....never tried so who am I to judge the Moderator for what he has to face on a daily and nightly basis. At least he is trying his best and attempting to be more than fair to both sides.

All I am doing it telling the truth and can back it up as I just did and I am being attacked non-stop by most probably City Officials, Staff, Police Officers, Fire Fighters and Council Members masquerading as one Anonymous after another Anonymous, sometimes I presume on taxpayer time. How ridiculous! Who is going to believe any of you folks after I just provided irrefutable and iron clad proof?

That is why I am gaining daily support on this blog site while my opponents are losing support. That is why we hope to have 2000 residents at the City Hall Tax Protest next April 15 instead of only 400. The residents are truly fed up. They were fed up before the lastest numbers came out which were disastrous compared to last year when we complained and protested that taxes were too high. City Officials can make them higher and get everyone angry and all riled up or we can cut pay-rolls, pension-rolls, and expenses across the board 10% with no body or item left unturned....just like we leave no stones unturned when we fight our legal battles.

City Officials have to take my posts as a wake up call or get the SNIPERS ready on City Hall next April 15 to defend their probable Cronyism and possible Corruption. But certainly inefficiencies and incompetence in most areas especially police, fire, legal and building departments. It is their choice. The ball is in their park. We are just awaiting their decision.

Let us hope they act wisely and reduce taxes without touching services. In other words cut the EXCESS FAT that is rampant in City Hall. The EXCESS FAT that was cut last year that included 47 HEADS was not felt by anyone. That means there is a lot more to go before we get to the REAL BEEF that makes this city turn.

Thank You,

CIJ

CIJ wrote:

And don't play around with percentages. My percentages were strictly based on the Common Stock portion of the portfolio(not including Mutual Funds) and are 100% accurate. JQP, is fully aware but he likes to use semantics, acrobatics and antics to confuse the bloggers.

Another of your favored tactics: accusing your critics of the same underhanded tactics that you regularly employ. You're the one playing with percentages by assuming that the entire loss came only from the stock portfolio. What basis do you have to make this assumption. Where's your proof, CIJ?

-JQP

By Citizen Investigative Journalist on October 7, 2009 12:44 PM

Anyway, Experienced, I wanted to ask you if you stumbled on the exact number for the Accrued Actuarial Pension Liability Deficit for the POs and FFs while doing your forensic analysis.

--------------------------------

It won't be available until the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report is finished by Sikich and posted on the website. I guess you could do a FOIA to the city and see if it's complete yet but hasn't been posted. Let me know what you find out.

JQP,

It's interesting that you should use Warren Buffet as your guide, since he is not known for the kind of short-term market timing that you seem to espouse. If you did better than him last year, maybe he should turn to you for advice.(JQP)

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I did listen to Warren Buffet. Maybe he did not practice what he preached in the New York Times Opinion article he wrote in October or November of 2008. But I practiced what he preached as it made sense.

I bought 21,000 shares of Walgreens at an average price of $27.63 when the Dow Jones was at about 7500 and Buffet said it is time to buy....time to jump in with both feet.

Unfortunately, I sold a 1000 shares at 34.50 on 9/01 and 3000 shares for $37.76 on 9/29. And fortunately for now 1000 shares today at $39.25 which was higher than the closing price at 3pm. I plan on dumping my remaining 16k shares before Oct 31 or if they approach 45 bucks, whichever come first, before the impending and imminent collapse that I am forecasting is on the horizon. Mark my words City of Naperville Pension Fund Managers as you can not continue to lose taxpayer money in this irresponsible and loose manner. You are paid to know better. To perform better. You are not amateurs like me. If I can make money, you can make money by playing safe stocks instead of risky balloons that burst at the prick of a pin. No pin is going to prick the solid bricks and mortar of Walgreens.

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Copy and Paste from my Trading Account today.

WAG
Buy / Sell 39.12 (current price) 0.81 (gains per share today) 2.11% (per centage gain today) $12,960.00 (dollar gain today) 16,000 ( number of shares) $27.63 (average cost of purchase per share) $183,840.00 (dollar profit on current shares since purchased) 41.62% (profit margin) $625,920.00 (total value of existing shares).

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Sometimes you can do better than the experts. No way am I a Warren Buffet but I did better than him this time around. I did 10 times worse than him in 2000-2001 as he does not believe in tech stocks since he does not know where they will be in 10 years. I learned my lesson and don't believe in them either. Or bank and brokerage stocks...

========================================================================================================================================

Here are my sales of Wags at less than the peak except for today which was higher than the closing price, JQP.

10/07/09 Sold -1000 of WAG @ $39.25 39,238.99

09/29/09 Sold 1,000 of WAG @ $37.76 (Order #3519) 37,749.02
09/29/09 Sold 1,000 of WAG @ $37.76 (Order #3518) 37,749.02
09/29/09 Sold 1,000 of WAG @ $37.76 (Order #3517) 37,749.02
09/01/09 Sold 1,000 of WAG @ $34.50 (Order #3468) 34,489.11

The darn stock even pays handsome dividends in a recession.

09/14/09 Dividend WALGREEN CO CASH DIV ON 21000 SHS REC 08/21/09...pay 09/12/09 $2,887.50

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As you can see I made about $231,500 investing in a solid stock like Walgreens in the last year while our Fund Managers lost 100 times that amount investing in very risky stocks. If you look around you would have to be blind not to see that Walgreens is doing well and growing incredibily everywhere including right here in Naperville. Why did our Fund Mangers not buy this obviously excellent stock?


Apparently our Fund Managers were chasing banks, brokerage, high teck companies or similiar stocks and taking unnecessary risks at taxpayer expense in an attempt to roll the dice and hit the JACKPOT ORGY. I was just going for conservative investments, brick and mortar, that I could feel and touch, and even shop at while listening to the register RING and RING.

Warren Buffet said, if you don't understand a stock, don't invest in it. If our Pension Fund Managers heeded the advice of Warren Buffet they would not have lost $20.2 million while charging us taxpayers $350,000 for their less than par services and performance.

A good pension fund manager will not lose money in a down market. An experienced fund manager will know when to get out. Most Fund Managers across the nation are worthless. They have proven not to be able to beat index funds pegged to the Dow Jones, S and P 500, Nasdaq 100, or Wilshire 5000. Why do we give them all this taxpayer money to invest and lose?

Why don't we just buy the index funds if we are not going to invest in safe, money in the bank stocks, like Walgreens that have almost no debt and will not collapse but only fluctuate in price to allow you to make money if you are willing to get in and out as I do. I no longer believe in long term investing as my buddy Warren believes. So we don't agree 100% anymore but I still admire the old man for his past performance which is ICONIC!


$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

PS. I am not recommending anyone buy Walgreen's right now as it has nearly doubled and it's run is almost over even though it has a little steam left. You may be able to make a few bucks if you enter now. But if you entered a few months after Mr. Buffet said to enter you could have doubled your money.

Unfortunately, I entered when Mr. Buffet said and only made a little over 41% in the second worst depression in US History. But no one said he is perfect but our Pension Managers need to read up on him if they want to do better. Over the last 45 years, it is undisputed no one has done better. I wish I would have bought some of his Berkshire Hathway shares but I unfortunately did not.

$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$


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By Anonymous on October 7, 2009 3:00 PM
The reason you don't believe my numbers is you are looking at fiscal years ending April 30, 2008 and before.

The problems I refer to took place in fiscal year ending April 30, 2009.

I stand by my assertion that the P and F Pension Funds lost $20.2 million in their investments for the fiscal year 2009. I copied and pasted the exact numbers from the City Financial Statements at least 3 times. And you guys complain I repeat myself. Well, if you are dealing with Kindergarten Children who can not keep years straight, understand numbers or comprehend English, you have to repeat yourself.

Do you want me to copy and paste the exact numbers from the fiscal 2009 one more time?

And don't play around with percentages. My percentages were strictly based on the Common Stock portion of the portfolio(not including Mutual Funds) and are 100% accurate. JQP, is fully aware but he likes to use semantics, acrobatics and antics to confuse the bloggers.

Since the percentage are an issue and can be misinterpreted, let us focus on the actual $20.2 million in investment losses in the P and F Pension Funds. And don't forget the 350k to the investment advisors or managers as fees.

It would be nice if Moderator Magee will tell you I don't make up numbers. I suspect he is following this debate closely as he reads every post. Hopefully, he went to the links I posted that led to the $20.2 million dollars in investment losses and verified them.

And thanks Moderator Magee for not letting them start "this stuff again" and sidetrack the debate. If they want to debate, don't let them run away. Demand they stop being wimps and posting as Anonymous in order to prevent me from ripping into them and whatever credibility let alone reputation these Anonymouses have left.

Anonymous,

The net pension increase to which you refer occurred in FY 2007-08. The investment portfolio DID experience a loss in FY 2008-09 of $20.5 million, though the net decrease in pension assets was more on the order $15 million, I believe.

While these are big numbers, they need to be considered in light of: the total size of the portfolio, which was $153 million at the beginning of FY 2008-09; and of the fact that 2008 was one of the worst years ever for financial markets worldwide.

-JQP

Ut oh, news flash... Diane G is one of Citizen Fake Journalist former alias names... Could it be she is coming out with the multiple personalities again to try and make her opinion look good? I loved the post from By Naperguy on October 7, 2009 9:18 AM. That could not sum it up any better than you did...

Thank you John Q. Public for the REAL pension numbers in our October 7th, 2009 12:07pm post. "The total loss amounted to 13% percent. Not seventy-three percent. Not fifty percent. Thirteen percent." I have a copy of the report he referred to and I can live with these TRUE numbers, as shown in the report.

Both the Police and Firefighter pension funds had a net increase of $13,795,068 as shown on page 61 of the report. Yes, there were some depreciations in assets, but not a net loss.

On page 58 of the report it shows that the "Increase in net pension asset" for police is 21,928 and 46,774 for firefighters.... NET PENSION INCREASE.....NOT LOSS.

Three-Year Trend Information

Police Pension Plan 4/30/08
Annual Percentage cost $ 2,826,244
Precentage contributed 100.8%
Net pension asset $ 236,953

Police Pension Plan 4/30/07
Annual Percentage cost2,740,643
Precentage contributed 100.8%
Net pension $215,025

Police Pension Plan 4/30/06
Annual Percentage cost2,731,248
Precentage contributed 89.4%
Net pension $193,298

Firefighters’ Pension Plan 4/30/08
Annual % cost $2,980,903
Precentage contributed 101.6%
Net pension $ 1,078,647

Firefighters’ Pension Plan 4/30/07
Annual % cost $2,837,030
Precentage contributed 101.6%
Net pension $1,031,873

Firefighters’ Pension Plan 4/30/06
Annual % cost $2,835,359
Precentage contributed 99.6%
Net pension $985,471


NET ASSETS AFTER PENSION COSTS, PAGE 58
Net pension asset at May 1, 2007 Police...$215,025
Firefighters..$1,031,873
Net pension asset at April 30, 2008...Police $ 236,953
Firefighters..$1,078,647


Now that I know what the real numbers are, and that MANY FALSE NUMBERS HAVE BEEN POST BY CIJ, I will no longer believe CJI's posts. I have seen many other posts, throughout this thread, that have proven CIJ can not be believed. For some reason CJI is looking for a fight, an uprising, or whatever you want to call it, for some reason I no longer understand.

The pension numbers, in the link posted by John Q. Public and shown on the City of Naperville website, do not support your posts on pension losses CJI.

Forensic Accountant Experienced,

It is good to have you back after your short absence.

Thanks for all the tips on the pension investment losses that turned out right on the money. I know you are more upset about the fact they were not disclosed until you visited City Hall, but I am upset not only for that reason but also the large dollar amounts that we taxpayers including yourself have to replace due to unnecessary high risks our pension managers took. Between the operating budget defict and these investment losses each homeowner in Naperville took a $693 dollar bath which will refect on the upcoming real estate bill or subsequent ones if the city decides to amortize this loss as JQP is suggesting.

(Moderator Magee, I undestand you own a condo in NW Naperville and are paying Naperville Taxes like the rest of us. Thus you are taking a beating like the rest of us. Please reconsider your stance of being on the fence. I am sure the Sun is not giving you 5% annual raises and a pension at age 52 so why do you tolerate these improprieties that reduce your purchasing power and standard of living. You work from 11am to 2am every day while our firefighters work one or two hours a day. Do you not see some unfairness? Mr. West spoke up finally...why not speak up and express an opinion either way. You spoke up against some kids that irresponsibly blew their horns while attending a championship swim meet but you have not a word to say to our City Officials for their inefficiencies and improprieties....please reconsider...we need you on our bulldozer before we ram City Hall if at all possibe...thanks for your reconsideration in advance. )

I don't see why Pension Fund Losses should not be taken in one year as they were lost in one year. Does anyone really think GM, Lehman, Chrysler, AIG, Thornburg Mortgage, Lucent, Tellabs, Nortel or Citibank are returning to their glory days? If they did not file bankruptcy they did 10-1 reverse splits in an attempt to deceive stockholders into believing there is still hope.

Even if the Dow Jones comes back many investment portfolios will not come back. The reason for that is the Dow Jones drops the losers and those that slip below a dollar and replaces them. For example, Kodak and GM have been dropped from the Dow Jones and replaced with more successful stocks. Unfortunately, our pension funds can not do that and many of their losses are permanent....they are REAL! They STING like a BEE and will not fly away like a BUTTERFLY!(sorry to be plagiarizing you Muhammed Ali...I still love you buddy...you are the GREATEST of all time...hope you are feeling better.)

Anyway, Experienced, I wanted to ask you if you stumbled on the exact number for the Accrued Actuarial Pension Liability Deficit for the POs and FFs while doing your forensic analysis. I believe CM Bob provided the actual number last year and it appears the City Manager and City Attorney double muzzled him and deprived him of his right to FREE SPEECH outside of council meetings where they can turn the microphone off on him if they think he is overreaching or overstepping.

(Furstenau was going to introduce NEW BUSINESS last night and discuss the operating budget and investment losses, and Madam pro-tem Mayor Broadhead adjourned the meeting in an abruptly unrespectuful deliberate manner. If there was ever an Establishment Stepford Wife, last night we met her. She was progammed and roboted by the Establishment. The robot mechanism did fail at one moment when she asked for a half time recess TWICE with only one item left on the agenda to discuss out of about 30...lol...)

At least CM BOB managed to vote against the Huber Ordinance and will show us one day if the City voted with him instead of against him, how we could have saved us 10 million dollars in Civil Rights Litigation costs. The only thing separating a massive costly defeat for the City of Naperville is a pro bono attorney for Mr. Huber, the HOMELESS PROTESTER. I am just hoping and praying we don't have another Napergate War on our hands that will cost each homeowner north of $200 if City Attorney Margo Ely decides to farm the case out to high priced and powered Chicago Law Firms as is the historical pattern for the City of Naperville.

What are your thoughts Experienced for what the future holds for our beloved City of Naperville? Do you think we can avoid Chapter 9 bankruptcy or reorganization? It is you who taught me cities file Chapter 9 while corps file Chapter 11 for reorganization followed by Chapter 7 for dissolutioon if the reorganization fails.

I suggested and a few bloggers agreed with me that we need 10% cuts across the board in pay-roll, pension-roll, expenses, expenditures, capital improvements and any area you can think of to eliminate this $14.1 million operating budget deficit. If we cut too much, we can dump the extra in the Pension Funds that lost $20.55 million when adding $350k in investment fees to those who lost our money.(Thanks for adding your voice Diane G. Every voice counts especially from 3 generation natives like yourself who work so hard for your dollars that the City of NAPERVILLE squanders away relentlessly.)

Do you think, Experienced, these 10% across the board cuts is a better proposal than eliminating leaf pick up which is a service we need? Why should we eliminate services from the taxpayers that we need and are relatively inexpensive? That ruins the quality of life in this town. But forcing the City to shed all EXCESS FAT and produce at a higher level with 10% less does not ruin the quality of life. It makes our town more affordable with the same great services.

Last year the City shed 46 employees and positions and no one felt a reduction in services. The reason being is they were EXCESS FAT. City Manager Doug Krieger in a round about way admitted this. So let us continue cutting this excess fat and when we feel the pain of reduced services we will holler that we had enough. But right now as CM Krieger stated so succinctly the cuts have not been felt by the taxpayers. The reason being is he was carrying tons of EXCESS FAT on his PAY-ROLL and PENSION-ROLL.

How about those building inspectors, Mr. Krieger, that are doing almost nothing due to a complete freeze on building and development that you are afraid to lay off? Why??? Are you the Manager for us the taxpayers or are you the saviour of their Pensions? If you don't know what HAT you are wearing RESIGN IMMEDIATELY. I know you read this blog site as all City Officials and Council Members. So start representing the taxpayers and producing. Lay the Building Inspectors off and give their names to Plainfied. Plainfield will need them when and IF development resumes. We will not as we are 98.5% developed. Let us save the remaining land for open and green space. Our streets are overflowing with cars which is affecting our quality of life. If you insist on feeling sorry for someone, feel sorry for the taxpayers who are funding you and your Double Dipping Assistant Manager Robert Marshall. How shameful of you to allow a Double Dipper to work on your staff while working on a second pension which in essence makes him a LEGAL TRIPLE DIPPER. Next time somone wants to resign from one department to work for another department, PLEASE SAY NO. Say the taxpayers had enough of our SHENANIGANS and are ready to throw us into Chapter 9. What you have done in City Hall is LEGALIZE CORRUPTION!!! The only thing that differentiates you guys from the MAFIA is you can LEGALIZE your wrongs and make them rights....you guys are just as bad as the STATE of ILLINOIS and the City of Chicago. Cronyism can be spotted from the rear view mirror of cars when they pass by City Hall as it is rampant in NaperPerfectVille also known to some as Stepford Wives Town, USA.

One thing CNN/Mony looks at when they rate a town is its taxes. I know our City Officials are dying to replace Ft. Collins as the # 1 city in Amercia. Raisng taxes will drop them out of the poll. However reducing taxes will allow them to rise in the polls. Since we don't have that mountain that Mayor George "Arthur" Pradel blamed for our second and third places in the last 2 respective polls, REDUCING TAXES may be our salvation to the top of the MOUNTAIN.

CIJ

PS. Please get better Mr. Mayor quickly and come back and head the City Council meetings. I can not stand pro-tem Madam Mayor Broadhead. I would not trust that lady with a 10 foot pole. Even though I disagree with you, I know you are an honest, decent, respectful and loving human being who listens and tolerates FREE SPEECH. Broadhead would not even let your "son" Furstenau say a few words about the budget or investment losses. She adjourned the meeting right in his face. Unbelievable!!! Furstenau is threatening to get back her at the next council meeting. Try to come back and save the Council from itself. Thank you, Mayor Pradel. We miss you!

CIJ wrote:

Our Fund Managers had huge loses. I estimated 73%. You alleged that some of our Mutual Funds also contained stocks so I took your word and reduced our estimated losses to 50%.

The total loss amounted to 13% percent. Not seventy-three percent. Not fifty percent. Thirteen percent. Your estimate, even at 50%, (and, no, I did not "allege" anything about stock mutual fund investments; it's stated in plain English on page 40 of the report) assumes that pretty much the entire loss came only from the stock portion of the portfolios, which constituted no more than about 1/3 of the whole (perhaps less). The portfolios also had more than $40 million invested in non-guaranteed mortgage-backed securities. You don't have a mortgage, so maybe you missed this news, but we also had an unprecedented meltdown in the mortgage market last year. And then there was the money invested in real estate, another market that experienced severe losses.

I don't pretend to be an expert, but I have read a few books on financial planning, and lots and lots of newspaper and magazine articles on the subject. Pretty much without exception, the experts advise that you diversify your investements, and that, for long term investments such as retirement savings, you keep a good portion of your money in stocks. If you look over the report, you'll find that the NPD and NFD had their money invested, among other things, in U.S. Treasuries (about 25% of the total); cash and short-term investments; guaranteed (GNMA) and non-guaranteed mortgage-backed securities; stocks, including foreign stocks; and real estate investment trusts. I don't know about you, but this sounds like a pretty diversified portfolio to me, and not one that is too exposed to the stock market, as you allege.


And:

I survived this meltdown with no losses. I was experienced and knew when to get out and in. Or maybe I did not know when to get back in, but I got back in when Warren Buffet said get back in at Dow 7500. It was not the bottom but you made lots of money if you followed Warren Buffet's advice this time around as the Dow is at 9600 and marching upwards due to irrational exuberance in my opinion. I intend to be getting out of the market on or before October 31 as I expect a major correction. Hopefully, we will hear from Mr. Buffett soon for more guidance.

It's interesting that you should use Warren Buffet as your guide, since he is not known for the kind of short-term market timing that you seem to espouse. Moreover, shares in his company declined by 40% between December 2007 and May of this year. Since his personal stake in the company is numbered in the hundreds of thousands of shares, and the stock was trading at more than $150K at it's height, his personal net worth declined by many BILLIONS of dollars. If you did better than him last year, maybe he should turn to you for advice.


Finally:

Your antics, semantics and acrobatics will get you nowhere, JQP. I am here for a legitimate cause. If you have kept up with the threads on this blog site in recent days and maybe even weeks, residents are finally seeing my viewpoint and joining me in my calls to cut salaries, expenses, pensions, jobs, and waste in City Hall.

Your cause may be legitimate, but your tactics are not. And that is what I object to. The end does not justify the means.

-JQP

I agree with Mr.77 who posted on 9/29/09, "No more taxes!! The city should cut back like everyone else. People are being taxed to death. The real estate taxes are terrible due to runaway school boards and now the city?"

Like my family budget, it's time the city operated by a balanced budget too. I cannot simply keep on spending when my income won't allow it; and robbing banks to increase my income isn't a viable alternative. Apparently we've learned few if any lessons as a result of the Wall Street and Banking debacles. Debt is ruining America! Citizens' home values have declined within the past year and a half, the jobless rate is at an all-time high, and the country has taken on more debt than at any time in its history. It's time the city learns to live on a budget -- it's EXISTING budget -- without putting any more financial strain on its citizens by either increasing existing taxes or adding any new taxes.

Unfortunately, many posters on this blog are correct that the management at City Hall needs to be changed. Also unfortunately, many of the same councilmen that got us into this mess by not responding efficiently or being too generous, were reelected. I voted for change -- it didn't happen. Next election, let's try again and this time encourage our neighbors to vote out the status quo.

I have been wondering for the past couple few years why the City has no money when the tax base with all the McMansions has so dramtically increased. What is happening with the money? I would certainly like to see the Sun does investigative reporting on how tax dollars are being spent now as opposed to 10 years ago. That may give the City some insight into how to trim back to save money now.

To answer one of the questions posed to the blog by the Moderator, no, I am not in favor of raising property taxes. Our properties have lost value over the past two years. I am also not in favor of increased sales or gasoline taxes. Cuts need to be made by the City. It seemed ludicrous to me that after the City laid off people last year that they then gave a raise in salaries (supposedly to boost morale). Rollback those raises, institute furlough days and/or cut back hours. The firm I work at has cut hours for many employees from 35 to 30 per week while things are slow. This could be done by the City -- I wouldn't expect that would bee too drastic of a change.

I would be happy to help Council work in making cuts. All they have to do is contact me. I would volunteer my help! I am a third generation Napervillian and want to see this town continue to be a good place to live.

All this ranting and raving about the city's portion of your tax bill which is only 11 or 13% of the total depending on which school district you live in. How about taking a closer look at 203 and 204 which is where most of the money is going? If you're worried about where your money is being spent, stop accepting their "it's for the children" nonsense. Make them focus more on core education and less on fluff and amenities. $150 million schools are insane!

Hallelujah! Hallelujah! We are saved! I can't wait for the next election. I have found a candidate who is an EXPERT in almost every facet of local government. Let me give you some examples.....

"We only need 100 fire fighters in this town.(9/29/9)" My candidate is obviously an expert on the fire service. Without any education in the fire service or fire service background my candidate can determine the exact number of firefighters needed to protect our citizens from fires and emergency medical incidents. No one else in america can do this with as little qualification as my candidate, and I mean no one!

"despite our over 2000-3000 McMansions worth multi-million dollars. (9/30/9)" My candidate is also an expert in real estate. I am in construction and have driven naperville's streets extensively over the past 20 years. Nowhere have I seen 2000-3000 McMansions all in the multi-million dollar range, yet in my heart I know they must exist because my candidate says they do. They must be next to the "I am not even counting homes worth only one million, which are in the thousands in NaperPerfectVille.(9/30/9)" If Remax or John Greene knew of the locations of these residences they could make a killing in fees when the market turns around. But don't fear, because my candidate and only my candidate knows their secret location which will never be divulged!

"Let us assume this game of soccer was on a one hour lunch break. If these employees were working hard in a rough job like landscaping would they truly have the energy to play soccer, a grueling sport for one full hour.(9/30/9)" My candidate is also an expert in Physiology because my candidate can look at a group of strangers on their lunch break and determine their physical capacity. Imagine if you will how my candidate could weed out potential employees merely by looking at them (no conversation necessary) and being able to declare if they were physically suitable or not for a specific job! The cost and time savings would be unbelievable!

"Let us cut wages by 10% for all 1100 city employees without exception. Let us demand each department reduce expenses by 10%.(10/3/9)" My candidate is also a financial Savant. Without actually speaking to department heads or researching financial records my candididate can determine what cuts need to be made in city government. My candidate doesn't need to know if a city department has already cut it's budget to the bare minimum over the last year during the multiple cost saving/budget reduction plans the city has instituted. Because my candidiate innately knows that there is always more to cut. "In summary, we don't want a reduction in services. We want a reduction in the cost of these services through a more fiscally responsible government.(10/6/9)" My candidate KNOWS that there must be more to cut in city government, there has to be! My goodness our city government has only been making cost reductions and layoffs for one year! My candidate knows that you can't possibly get to the bare minimum without cutting services in such a short time period!

"Hold onto City Vehicles longer...until they die. It is cheaper than replacing them at 53,000 miles so a city employee can have a shiny paint job. Vehicles are made to last 250 miles these days.(9/29/9)". My candidate is smarter than a computer program! The vehicle services department inputs every cost/repair into a computer program for every city owned vehicle. The computer program determines when it is no longer cost effective to keep/maintain a vehicle. The city then sells that vehicle to save money. My candidate knows that computer programs can't be trusted to assist us with our finances. I hope my candidate abolishes all computer programs if elected!

And the coup de grace "I say with this attitude close down both the police and fire departments (10/5/9).RIGHT ON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Let's not stop there! If I have garbage pickup (on second thought I can burn that in the backyard), water and electricity I am good to go. I call on my candidate to eliminate all naperville government except electric/water/wastewater. As you can see from my post, my candidate has extensive knowledge in just about everything, including many areas I didn't have the time or desire to write about. Let me present! Drum roll please........................

Citizen Investigative Journalist for mayor!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Yea!!!


By Anonymous on October 6, 2009 10:37 PM
Bloggers like CIJ are the main reason many entities are going the Twitter route, to eliminate 2000 word diatribes. Especially when said diatribes are so repetitive. In CIJ's case, she has been posting the same crap for almost 2 years.

========================================================================================================================================

Anonymous,
The reason this blog site is successful is because of bloggers like me and not bloggers like you. This blog site is by far the most successful of all those under the Umbrella of the Sun-Times of which there are more than 50. The Homeless Man thread has over 600 hits. A Napergate Thread had over 900 hits.

Bloggers do like to read what I say and either agree or disagree. Almost everyone of my posts gets numerous responses indicating there is interest in what I say.

I am sorry people like you are dense and think I am repeating myself. The operating budgets for 2007, 2008 and 2009 are very different animals and I have discussed them all from year to year. The numbers change and my remarks change accordingly. I guess an ignorant person like you can not differentiate one annual budget from another. I doubt you know how to read a financial statement if you can not even choose a handle.

Personally, I think Moderator Magee should require every blogger to choose a handle and be accountable for what is being said by that handle. Not allow you to hide like wimps under the handle Anonymous that could be anyone.

My last post simply rebutts the Moderator's statement that Mr. West does not read his column. He is certain Mr. West does not read his blog site and I am certain Mr. West does read his blog site. I provided some good evidence such as he wanted to imitate the Sun Blog Site with his own attempt under the same umbrella and failed miserably. I am sure he thought about initiating his own site without ever looking at the Sun Blog Site. No chance in a million. He got the idea from the Sun Blog Site. He got the idea because he was reading it and thought he may have a following after 36 years. He had almost a ZERO following and got a wake up call like no other in his unstoried career.

As far as limiting words, that is nonsense. NO one is required to read any post. If you don't like the blogger or the length of the blog, just skip over it and go to the next one. How difficult is that? I am telling you when the Moderator stated we have Kindergarten Children blogging here, he was not Kidding!

The bottom line bloggers do read my long and short threads. They are curious as to what I have to say. Some hate me and some love me. Some like me and some dislike me. But they care about what I say and respond to it.

Most of the attacks against me personally are simply because they can not refute the hard hitting messages in my posts. If you can't refute the message go for the messenger. I was not born yesterday.

Thank you!

CIJ

By Anonymous on October 6, 2009 9:21 PM
Wow, all that great advice from the Citizen Wack Journalist and yet the city council voted against all that advice on the Hubber issue? I thought they were listening to you? I guess not.

========================================================================================================================================

How about watching the name calling. I thought the Moderator told you Kindergarten Children umpteen times not to call your fellow bloggers names. Just want to point out to the Moderator who starts this nonsense before it escalates.

As far as the City Council, they listen but do not hear.

I never said they were listening to me. I said they are hearing me and anyone else who speaks.

They only listen when a Federal or State Court rules against them as happened in the Napergate Case. Otherwise for the most part they hear but don't listen.

That is why they have a huge operating budget deficit, a huge accrued actuarial pension liability deficit and now humongous investment losses in both the P and F Pension Funds.

Anyway since you called me a whacko, I think you are a WIMP for posting under Anonymous and not being able to establish a credible moniker with a reputation on this blog site. Yes, you are a WIMP!

I hope the Moderator deletes your name calling post that he stated he would not tolerate....but sometimes he apparently overlooks this nonsensical childish name calling. I feel the only way to deal with Kindergarten Kids when the Moderator can not control them is call them names back.....give those wimps some of their medicine back in bigger dozes.

Bloggers like CIJ are the main reason many entities are going the Twitter route, to eliminate 2000 word diatribes. Especially when said diatribes are so repetitive. In CIJ's case, she has been posting the same crap for almost 2 years.

Food for thought Chris, Maybe not limit posts to 140 words, but there has to be a happy medium somewhere in between 140 and 2000.

Wow, all that great advice from the Citizen Wack Journalist and yet the city council voted against all that advice on the Hubber issue? I thought they were listening to you? I guess not.

By Chris Magee, moderator on October 6, 2009 11:17 AM
I'm sure Tim West doesn't read this blog and I remember one of those days Tim had already written his column long before CIJ posted anything, but whatever.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Moderator Magee,
I would not be so sure Mr. Tim West does not read this blog site.

Before you came on board, he attempted to start his own blog site under the Naperville Sun Umbrella of Blog Sites.. He actually had it up and going for several months.

He averaged one or two hits on each of his 10 threads. I think his record for a thread was single digits possibly 8 hits.

I don't think he got his idea for a Blog Site through direct communication with God, Jesus Christ in Jerusalem, Allah the Almighty or the Prophet Muhammed on Mt. Arafat in the Saudi Arabian desert.

It is very likely he got his idea for his personal blog site from reading the Main Blog Site which is the one you are currently running and I consider very successful. I took a walk yesterday in the nice weather and about half my neighbors stated they read it on occassion. No one said they wrote but one promised me he will start writing after I told him the City is looking for $693 dollars in additional taxes to make ends meet. He was actually infuriated as he just lost his job and is very tight on funds.

Sadly, Mr. West's blog site was not only a failure but a disaster as he focused on topics like his cat, his personal health, arts in Chicago, Oprah and whatever most residents are not interested in. He later removed his blog site voluntarily or maybe the Naperville Sun forced him to shut it down. I really don't know as I have no inner connections or relations to the Naperville Sun as I do in City Hall.

(JFTR, I tired to make a few posts on Mr. West's blog site, but he refused to publish my anti-city blogs. Never published one. Keep in mind he is married to an attorney in the Brestal Law Firm which is in bed with City Hall as the Napergate Man proved over and over again in City Council Meetings...that could have been Mr. West's motive....he refused to communicate with me in any way. I guess you fail if you only want one viewpoint on your Blog Site and you succeed as in this Blog Site if you tolerate opposing points of view. Half the posts on West's Blogs came from his friend Jesse in California. I just thought it was amazing that a 36 year columnist had almost no following in town....no popularity. Readers don't care for someone who spends his life kissing up to City Hall. I suspect Mr. West figured that out eventually.)

So not only does Mr. West read this blog site, but attempted to start his own and failed.

Keep in mind, Moderator Magee in some sense he competes with you. You are both taking letters from the public and posting them or publishing them. He would be remiss, if he did not check on how you were doing and what your bloggers are saying compared to what his Letter to the Editor writers are saying. If he does not, I don't know how he spends his time at his desk. I could write his 3 columns per week in less than one hour and even have them spell checked. Does the Naperville Sun not pay him to work 40 hours a week? What is he doing the other 39 hours if he is not reviewing his Letters to the Editor and the Sun Blog Site to get a feel for the pulse of the community and maybe pass it on to Sun Officials? He does not write any articles for the Naperville Sun to the best of my knowledge.

The last article he wrote was at least 10 years ago when he asked City Officials to produce the Napergate Trial Costs. They ignored him like he was one of their children having a temper tantrum and he later returned to their camp with his head down and defeated. His latest column could be another temper tantrum because his buddies took it too far and are literally embarrassing or a final shedding of his stripes and a conversion into a new personality with hope.

Before you took over, this blog site was run by Editors of the Sun, Mr. Ted Slovich and Jim Lynch, who of course read it and were influenced by it. They wanted us to collect information for them as Citizen Journalists. I just chose to be the INVESTIGATIVE type thus my moniker.

They promised us if we built support for an issue and got the bus rolling, they would join us on the bus wherever it may be going including City Hall. I honestly liked their style of making us feel important, encouraging us, and make us believe we can bring change to the community.(Opposite the style of Defeatist TB...apparently a bitter and lonley person who has given up on life and progress.)

I think TB is jealous of your success, Mr. Magee. He keeps cutting your blog site down. He keeps implying how few writers there are. Well, it has ten times or maybe even 100 times the writers who post on the Letters of the Editor in the Naperville Sun.

Using TB's nonsensical logic, the Naperville Sun is a failure even though only 5-10 individuals write Letters to the Editor easch week, but 16,800 resident subscribe and 50,000 residents read the Naperville Sun.

TB is so brilliant he wants to save money by cutting a necessary service that almost all the residents in town use....leaf pick-up that happens 2 or 3 times a year. It is not costly per resident as it is done in a mass and efficient way.

If 50 companies were to do this privately and charge us individualy, it could not be done as cheaply as the City of Naperville does it. The people who do leaf pick-up for the city are very efficient and work non-stop with supervisors pushing them to move faster. I witness this each year as I trade from my home most days. Today, I had to go to Chicago Exchange, thus I could not blog during trading hours.

Fire fighters work an hour or two on a 24 hour shift. One blogger is alleging they sometimes work for 2 departments. I find this very hard to believe and would like to see some proof. This should be cause for immediate termination if TRUE. Obviously fire fighters are not worn out from their work as on their days off they sealcoat most driveways in Naperville. They work under the name of Firemens Sealcoating. I have used them and they are extremely friendly and professional and proud to tell you they are FIRE FIGHTERS. In other towns they clean commercial parking lots with heavy duty machines they own. Some do snowplowing in the winter. Others do landscaping in the summer for extra money. But I honestly never heard of a Fire Fighter Double Dipping in two departments and collect Double Wages and Double Pensions. This would make Assistant City Manager Robert Marshall a quireboy in church.

TB is here strictly to make sure Fire Fighters don't have their pay cut 10% which would lead to an automatic 10% pension cut. That is his agenda. He wants everyone to participate in eliminating the budget deficit except fire fighters.

Fire fighters is the one area where you can really cut. I am not for a volunteer fire fighting department, but I am for reducing 50-100 fire fighters and see how things go. I believe we can survive and this one reducition alone could salvage the budget this year. The building inspector money we save from laying 90% of them can be used to replenish the devastated P and F Pensions until the Constitution is Amended or we file Chapter 9, which ever may come first.

If a fire started in a home and everyone is out thanks to smoke detectors and alarm detectors, whether a fire fighter comes in 3 minutes or 5 minutes does not make that much of a difference if the property owner has insurance. Even with a 25% reduction in staff, in most cases fire fighters will arrive in the same exact time.

We are paying 31 million dollars to fire fighters to in essence protect less than a few hundred thousand dollars in property damage per year in Naperville. In my opinion this is insane. This is fiscally irresponsible to the nth degree.

As far as paramedics we should hire a private service. No private service will charge you 2500 to show up. Right now it costs us 2218 per call according to Experienced despite owning the ambulances and equipment.

Most ambulance services can get you an ambulance for 400-900 dollars and the person using it can pay for the service and we can save $31,000,000 or some lesser amount if we want to keep some fire fighters to put out a fire every month or two. Most fires are put out by civlians before the fire fighters even arrive. We really just need 5 stations in the North, West, Central, East and South parts of town for the BIG FIRE if it ever comes. Since homes are separated by nice distances in town and so are the high rise buidlings on the Tollway Corridor it is unlikely we will see a fire jump from building to building. And most of these high rise buildings have state of the art sprinkler systems that can put out almost any fire except one in which a commericial jet plows through a building. In that case fire fighters can not do anything as has been proven in 911. We could have saved the lives of 345 fire fighters if we would have only known that it is impossible to fight a fire started by 50,000 gallons of fuel from a jet tank in a high rise. But we need to learn from this experience. I doubt any fire fighter would ever enter a building hit by a jet again. It is CERTAIN DEATH and fire fighters are not paid to die. They are paid to extinguish fires. Soldiers are paid for the willingness to die for their country.

Anyway the bottom line is TB is nothing but a person who likes to shoot his mouth as if he makes sense. If he is studied as I have studied him he makes no sense. He simly utters nonsense in hopes someone will believe him.

To exempt fire fighters from their proportionate share of cuts shows he is nothing but a very biased individual trying to protect his brother and his Big Fat Pay Check and Big Fat Pension. Moderator Magee should prohibit him from blogging on the subject of fire fighter pay and pension cuts due to his huge "Conflict of Interest" that he does not appear to understand or comprehend.

Thanks you,

CIJ

PS. Even though this letter is addressed to you, Moderator Magee, it is meant for publication. I think sometimes you believe if a letter is addressed to you, it is not meant for publication. That is why I try not to address them to you but to another blogger. But if you express an opinion, I have a right to rebutt your opinion.

I believe you really don't know if Mr. West reads your blog site and for you to say he does not for sure is something I would like you to retract. Are you watching over his shoulder at work? How do you know he does not read your blog site when he goes home? He does not write much so I hope he is an avid reader of your blog site. I am sure he reads it daily and wonders why he failed miserably and why you succeeded so immensely. Maybe, you need to tell him it is about CENORSHIP, Mr. West. It is about allowing FREE SPEECH even when you are at the Controls. It is not about CENSORING paid ads as he did with Napergate V and Napergate VI, as was alleged by the Napergate Man in subsequent ads. Yes, history does teach you a lot. I wondered about the allegations of the Napergate Man. But when Mr. West censored all my posts 100% on his West Blog Site, I knew the Napergate Man was telling us the truth. So did all the Courts of Law eventually.

To Enough,

Please don't mistake my corrections of CIJ's factual errors and misrepresentations on the issue of Naperville's pensions as an endorsement of everything he opposes. I am in agreement with the majority on this board that the city should look at all reasonable cost savings, including salary cuts, before it even begins to consider any kind of tax increase to close this looming budget deficit.

I don't agree with either of you about gutting the fire department, though.

-JQP

"The city council really does need to begin planning for possible Federally induced disasters like:

*Further currency collapse"

The oil producing countries are actively looking to dump the dollar, translation: we don't accept those any more.

Printing money and borrowing money has consequences; does change mean destroying the value of our currency, making savings in dollars worthless?

If the dollar is even more severely devalued, will the city have to go back to brick pavers and gravel for our streets because we won't be able to afford the asphalt?

===================================================================htthttp://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/the-demise-of-the-dollar-1798175.html

THE DEMISE OF THE DOLLAR

In a graphic illustration of the new world order, Arab states have launched secret moves with China, Russia and France to stop using the US currency for oil trading

If you segregate the fire calls vs. the paramedic calls, you have 5205 fire calls in 2006-07 and 6150 in 2008-09, or .035 and .042 calls per person, respectively. The only way I can breakout cost of fire calls is pro rata on the basis of number of calls. Out of $31,000,000, 44% for fire would be $13,640,000 or $2218 per call.

Anonymous at 11:17, I don't think you are reading my calculations correctly. I wasn't doing tax rate. I was doing calls per population served.

Food for thought….

CIJ (MHB) asked Tim West to “please start discussing the budget instead of his cats, the arts, and Oprah's Parade” and since the request he’s “written 2 opinions about the budget”, thus being “PROOF that Sun Officials are reading this blog site and can be influenced”. But later MHB stated that “Editor Tim West is now finally calling on our City Officials to cut spending and make cuts just as in the private sector. Sure his wake-up call came 3.5 years after mine….”

So does this blog have an immediate affect on what the Sun writes, a 3.5 year delayed affect, or no affect at all?

I’d argue that this blog has no affect at all. The Sun will do what they do and I doubt they pay any attention to the dozen or so regular contributors here. Hell, I bet 90% of the posts here are from the same five or six people, hardly a group large enough to wield that kind of influence.

Could it be, perhaps, that Tim West wrote about taxes and spending because that was what the city council was debating? Wouldn’t that be more likely?

To believe that this blog influences city hall or The Sun is akin to believing that my toothpaste purchase yesterday caused P & G’s stock price to soar. Some things are just coincidental.

T.B.

By Appaloosa on October 5, 2009 7:47 PM
The city should inform the public what amount of tax it needs to place on each household ($100, $200, whatever) and what services will be cut if it doesn't get it. The city should then put a referendum up for us to vote on. We either decide to pay more taxes or lose city services. We make the decision ourselves. We live with our own decision. Let the majority decide.

========================================================================================================================================It Should not be about more taxes or losing city services as you wrongfullly state.

It should be about the same services or more services from government at a lower cost to taxpayers.

Reducing all 1100 City of Naperville employees' salaries by 10% will not result in more taxes or less services. It should result in lower taxes and equal services....if not better as the fear of God may enter some employees minds who are not producing to their maximum potential. If reduction in salaries does not do the job, the next step is LAY-OFFS...something residents nor city employees I am sure want.

That is what we need to strive for.....a 10% reduction in salaries as well as all other expenses including pensions and health care.

If we can reduce the salaries, we can also put a dent in the pension deficits that are based on the salaries.

So reduction of salaries should be a top priority as it is a form of REVERSE DOUBLE DIPPING and returns some of our "stolen" money back to us.

Laying off Assistant City Manager Marshall for Double Dipping would send a message to all employees never to retire from one department only to work for another where you are probably not as skilled just for the purpose of Double Dipping while working on a second pension to enrich yourself at the expense of struggling taxpayers. It is impossible that such an individual could really have the taxpayer's concerns in his sight when he is DOUBLE DIPPING.

In summary, we don't want a reduction in services. We want a reduction in the cost of these services through a more fiscally responsible government. We want efficiency instead of incompetence!!

To Experienced:

KUDO's. At first, I thought I was going to get the "typical fire captain propaganda". But then a major portion of my question was answered. The costs are substantially more no matter how you measuer them.

And I am not aware of any better outcomes--fires put out with no damage. In fact, once a fire takes hold, the damage is done and there is nothing ANY fire department can do to undo that matter.

And check with your insurance agents. ISO ratings of 1 to 3 result in the same insurance premium. A four would be higher, but no more than 5 to 10 percent when I checked last. No where near the taxes to supprot the higher cost.

And let me stress, I put this out there for discussion. The costs of maintaining a fire department (including these pensions) are a major reason for the increased costs of local government including Naperville.

Another consideration, housing codes over the last 20 years that now cover 80% of the houses in Naperville are much more stringient than those before resulting in even fewer fire calls.

And to JQP


Economists are now focusing on the negative impact to our economy of state and local government spending. Nobody can figure out how it has EXPLODED (that's right) in the five years leading up to the financial meltdown. Something NEEDS to be done. Declines in student enrollment (yes in 203 and 204) are not being offset with corresponding spending cuts.

The City of Naperville has ignored the financial problems. Where are the layoffs in the planning departments--90%. How about getting rid of deputies (such as double dipping Marshall)? What are these extra people doing? We are a safe community, let parents patrol their drinking children instead of these massive stings to arrest them. We are conducting NATIONWIDE Internet stings--let the FBI do that.

ETC. Etc. You can see where the explosion in local goverment spending is occuring. New York tax receipts are down 36%. CUT!! CUT!! CUT!! The game is over and government is not immune.

Otherwise, let's vote out home rule and all of these taxes would end. Put Naperville into a bankruptcy.

I would like to thank you for the data (Experienced)on the Glen Ellyn Volunteer Fire Company. Your cost data has some missing information that must be pointed out and added to your figures in order to compare these two service providers.

1) Glen Ellyn Volunteer Fire Company does not provide paramedic service, nor does the Glen Ellyn Volunteer Fire Company even own an ambulance.
2) The Village of Glen Ellyn Contracts the Paramedic Service and pays for part of it out of the Village budget. See attached link for information about Glen Ellyns paramedic provider.

http://www.glenellynlife.com/index.php?q=node/963

3) "*Note: This does not include any additional expense of automating the billing process or the expense for building bunks at the fire houses."

4)Staff Expense + Ambulance Expense + Supply Expense + Billing Expense = Total Known Expenses

Year 1: $830,000 + 64,000 + 20,000 + 34,000 = $948,000
Year 2: $860,420 + 64,000 + 20,000 + 34,000 = $978,420
Year 3: $892,026 + 64,000 + 20,000 + 34,000 = $1,010,026
Year 4: $924,865 + 64,000 + 20,000 + 34,000 = $1,042,865
Year 5: $958,985 + 64,000 + 20,000 + 34,000 = $1,076,985

5) It should be pointed out that Glen Ellyn will be paying for part of the ambulance service out of the city budget and part of the cost will be from billing the patient for each use.

6)See attached link, FIRE COMPANY SSA REQUEST
http://www.glenellyn.org/2009/Fire%20Company%20SSA.html
"The Glen Ellyn Fire Company is a private not-for-profit organization that provides fire service to the community. The Fire Company serves the entire Village of Glen Ellyn along with two areas of unincorporated DuPage County.

The two unincorporated areas have traditionally received emergency services at no cost. The Fire Company has determined that free service can no longer be provided. To continue service beyond January 1, 2010, they have requested that the Village assist through the creation of two special service areas (SSA’s). This would enable the collection of property tax revenues to fund emergency services."

Estimated Annual Property Tax Within SSA
Annual Property Tax Assuming Tax Assuming
Year 1 Rate of Maximum 0.25
$250,000 $206
$350,000 $289
$450,000 $371
$550,000 $454
$650,000 $536
$750,000 $619

7)It was stated that "Calls in Naperville and unincorporated areas serviced by Naperville were 12,975 in 2008. There are 146,000 in the area serviced. Cost of Dept in 2008 was 31,000,000. Calls per person is .089 [.081 in 2006](2.6 times more than GE). Cost per call is $2620 or 5 times more."
In the Glen Ellyn Fire Company request for an SSA (special services area) the fire company stated the following...
Tax Rate to Fund $1,377,650------------->0.086

8) Now if the fire company only provides fire service, and the Village pays for paramedic service, than the fire company that uses only volunteers is requesting (and now receives) almost the same tax rate amount (and cost) as the full time fire department we receive. The difference, as stated by Experienced and from the SSA information, is 0.003 to have a volunteer fire company with no ambulance service or a full time service with paramedics.

By John Q. Public on October 5, 2009 3:22 PM
CIJ wrote:

But not at all amazing to anyone other than you who was paying even the slightest amount of attention to the worldwide financial meltdown last year.

========================================================================================================================================

JQP,

I watch CNBC and Bloomberg everyday from 830am to 300pm and I am fully aware of the meltdown. I experienced the meltdown in 2000-2001 because I was inexperienced as our Fund Managers are today. I lost a good portion of my savings.

But I lived and learned.

I survived this meltdown with no losses. I was experienced and knew when to get out and in. Or maybe I did not know when to get back in, but I got back in when Warren Buffet said get back in at Dow 7500. It was not the bottom but you made lots of money if you followed Warren Buffet's advice this time around as the Dow is at 9600 and marching upwards due to irrational exuberance in my opinion. I intend to be getting out of the market on or before October 31 as I expect a major correction. Hopefully, we will hear from Mr. Buffett soon for more guidance.

Maybe our City Officials should bid on his next luncheon as they may learn something from him about investing. If they are going to burn dollars, they may as well burn some dollars and have lunch with Warren. He donates the money to charity so at least it is going for a good cause and something can be learned to avoid future Financial or Tech Tsunamis.

Our Fund Managers had huge loses. I estimated 73%. You alleged that some of our Mutual Funds also contained stocks so I took your word and reduced our estimated losses to 50%.

We are paying Fund Managers $355,000 to prevent these kind of massive losses. Were they sleeping behind the wheel during the Bank Meltdown or Financial Tsunami? Mr. Buffet was writing OPINIONS in the NY TIMES for all of us to read. Did they think they were smarter than him? I suspect they did.

Pension Fund money came from taxpayers mostly for the retirement of POs and FFs. It should never have been invested in risky investments. It should have been invested in conservative investments to secure the retirments of the POs and FFs.

I am angry and bitter because this $20.55 million in lost funds is not the responsibility of those who lost it. It is the responsibility of the taxpayers. We have to replenish it. We the taxpayers guaranteed the PO and FFs their 75% pensions at age 52. I am against it but have to live with it unfortunately.....until the Illinois Constitution is changed or the City of Naperville files Chapter 9 bankruptcy. Whichever comes first?

Now I am told I have to pay twice because the leaders in City Hall selected 10 less than qualifed establishment folks to oversee these 2 Pension Fund Management Teams who did amazingly poor. Way below average despite being paid handsomely! Can you imagine our City Rules allow the Mayor to select 4 of these 10 individuals even though he may know nothing about finances. While we have a great and honest Mayor what does he really know about the financial world after spending 30 years on the streets of Naperville masquerading as Officer Friendly and sometimes Santa Claus? Why did our City Council give his position the power to make 4 APPOINTEES out of the 10? Amazing things, if you ask me, take place in Stepford Town, USA. Goodness Gracious, if the CNN/MONY folks knew how to look under the hood of the car instead of just the exterior paint, NaperPerfectville would rank dead last.

How can a town be ranked second or third in the nation when it has a $14.1 million pension deficit despite high taxes? How can we be ranked so high with a $120 million accrued actuarial pension liability deficit? How can we be ranked so high when our pension managers lost $20.55 million in one year? How can we be ranked so high when we have no tolerance for one helpless HOMELESS STRIKER?

Imagine we paid these Pension Managers $355,000 to lose $20.2 million. Our legal department if it was functional would sue these paid Pension Fund Managers. Instead, it has all its energy concentrated on evicting a harmless HOMELESS STRIKER. That is why there is a correlation in these 2 issues. A very strong correlation. I am sorry folks like Blogger Dan are so small minded and blind to the correlation and want me to take soup to Mr. Huber. JFYI, Mr. Huber will not take soup from anyone for fear the CIA will have it poisoned. He has got street smarts.....but he will take money even if it is from the CIA as long as it is not counterfeit which will bring the FBI to his encampment. He has got his hands full with City Hall and does not need FBI/CIA interference. He is currently writing a scathing speech that he will deliver tomorrow at the City Council that I intend to listen to. I can only hope he goes on the OFFENSIVE as I have advised him repeatedly in person and on this blog site.

I don't know what you do for a living, JQP, but you know what I partially do for a living. My tax return lists my occupation as an INVESTOR. So I know a lot more than you can imagine about national and financial markets.

I also know the Social Security Administration made a decision under the Bush Administration that the stock market was too risky for retirement beneifits and forgoed it. What a wonderful decision in hind sight or Social Security would be BANKRUPT right now and private citizens would have no retirement benefits as small as they are! Bush did something right in his 8 year tenure.

Our Pension Managers and the 10 appointed individuals who oversee them let us down in a BIG BIG WAY. They all need to be terminated or submit their resignations. They all need to be replaced by more qualified individuals. In Japan, when financial advisors screw up this bad, they jump from high rises and commit suicide. They have shame. Our investment advisors and managers have not apologized to the taxpayers or showed any shame. They apparently don't care when they lose taxpayer money. Our City Officials try to protect them by attempting to hide the losses on the Financial Statements until a blogger named Experienced who happens to be a Forensic Accountant by trade exposed them. Bless his heart and soul. He prevented them from pulling a second Napergate Style Cover-Up!

You are making excuses for them, JQP. Stop making excuses. Understand they and the City Managers cost you $693 dollars if you own an average home in Naperville. Even if they amotize their losses, they still cost you $693 dollars. What is the difference between buying a HUGE PLASMA TV you can not afford with cash or credit? As a matter of fact it will cost you more if you buy it on credit. Something called interest rates will add cost. Did you ever hear of interest, JQP?

So if the city wants to amoritize these losses, the cost will even be greater to us taxpayers as we will most certainly experience additional costs.

Conservative Establishment Editor Tim West is now finally calling on our City Officials to cut spending and make cuts just as in the private sector. Sure his wake-up call came 3.5 years after mine, but at least he woke up and made a wake-up call. Here is the link to his Opinion asking for City Cuts in Salaries, Expenses and Bodies if necessary.

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


http://www.suburbanchicagonews.com/napervillesun/news/west/1805477,6_4_NA04_WESTCOLUMN_S1-091004.article


________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


Why don't you wake up, JQP, and make a wake-up call to another individual in Naperville? You seem like you are arguing for the sake of arguing. Just to be a smart-a-lic on this blog site. You have no cause or agenda. Just like that Dan fellow who probably changed his name from Dave Sinker, the owner of the Comedy Shrine, across the street from Mr. Huber. Dan on this blog site sounds exactly like Dave before the City Council....uses the same obnoxious words. Only one person hates Mr. Huber that much and we finally know who he is. Dan and Dave how close and clever but you are BUSTED!

Your antics, semantics and acrobatics will get you nowhere, JQP. I am here for a legitimate cause. If you have kept up with the threads on this blog site in recent days and maybe even weeks, residents are finally seeing my viewpoint and joining me in my calls to cut salaries, expenses, pensions, jobs, and waste in City Hall.

I am actually thrilled that my persistence and perseverance paid off. I learned that from reading the Napergate Ads. So history can teach you a lot.

Maybe there is a reason why Moderator Magee chose History as his Major. There is a lot to learn from History....especially in Naperville.

Thank you!

CIJ

========================================================================================================================================

PS. The above post was intended for the HOMELESS STRIKER'S THREAD BUT transferred here by request of Moderator Magee. Hopefully, the parts about Mr. Huber, the homeless man, will be understandable to those who did not follow that thread.

By Anonymous on October 5, 2009 6:52 PM
Enough,

Are you aware that Naperville and Glen Ellyn are not a good comparison as Glen Ellyn still uses volunteer fire fighters?

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I think the comparison is excellent and when considered in a proportional way makes a lot of sense. Keep in mind both towns are land-locked.

The point that Enough is probably trying to make that is going over everyone's head is that fire fighting is something a community is willing to do on a VOLUNTEER basis.

This is probably because a fire fighter's job is easy. Unlike a cop, he only has to work one or two hours a day and can socialize with his fellow fire fighters for the other 23 hours. Many men would not mind being volunteer fire fighters just to get away from their nagging wives once in a while....or vice versa. They even get to sleep 8 hours on each 24 hour shift while getting paid. Many run businesses on the side like Firemen's Sealcoating which you are all familiar with.

We have a $14.1 million deficit. Shutting down our entire Fire Department would get rid of this deficit and even our $20.55 million in pension investment losses that we sustained this year. We would get rid of half our accrued actuarial pension liability deficit of $120 million by closing down our fire departments and getting volunteers.

If Glen Ellyn can find volunteers, we should be able to. Napervillians are a very generous people who have always volunteered their time and resources. I personally would love to be a volunteer fire fighter and don't mind undegoing the training required. It sounds like a great experience.

Our public safety employees are no longer serving us. They have become money hungry and greedy. Even at charity events like the PigFest and Last Fling, they demand OT. They refuse to volunteer. They have lost any sense of civic duty or responsiblity to the taxpayers. They are here to put in their time and collect a pension. I doubt any would truly risk life or limb, if it came down to it. The US Armed Forces make a fraction of what our PUBLIC SAFETY EMPLOYEES earn and are truly risking limb and life for us without even a gripe. God Bless them and keep them safe!

I say with this attitude close down both the police and fire departments or replace the Chiefs and find new Chiefs who at least understand some volunterism such as for Charity Events is necessary. It is essential we eliminate this OT if we are ever going to balance the budget....in both the Police and Fire Depts. that is bordering on a maddening 6 million dollars.

We got a Police Chief who has potted plants in courtrooms collecting OT, school resource officers riding bikes in downtown, checking girls in mini-skirts and high heels collecting wages when absolutely not needed, a Fire Chief who will not close half his Fire Houses when the town is sleeping and no one seems to understand why we have a $14.1 million operating budget deficit.

These Chiefs want to sock the taxpayers for $693 dollars per household extra this year on their REAL ESTATE TAX BILLS to maintain their inefficient and broken ways. They refuse thinking out of the box. They want raises for themselves and their troops when the rest of us are experiencing pay cuts and lay offs. How far do they think this will last? I assure them they are at the end of their rope and will hang themselves sooner than later.

Establishment Editor Tim West has joined me with his call for pay-cuts, pension-cuts, body-cuts, expense cuts and the stoppage of government waste. He is as conservative as they come. He has spoken after being as quiet as E. F. Hutton. The city must now listen...

Here is a link to his ON THE MONEY latest column in the Naperville Sun.


========================================================================================================================================


http://www.suburbanchicagonews.com/napervillesun/news/west/1805477,6_4_NA04_WESTCOLUMN_S1-091004.article


========================================================================================================================================


It is time for all residents to join Opinion Editor Tim West and say to our fiscally irresponsible City Leaders that Enough is Enough. That we had it with them and their policies. Good Bye and Good Riddens to all those who do not want CHANGE but continued CRONYISM!

Glen Ellyn's ISO Fire Rating is 4 with hydrants; Naperville is 2 with hydrants. ISO ratings are determined by an outside agency based upon:

Fire alarms
Ten percent of the overall grading is based on how well the fire department receives fire alarms and dispatches its fire-fighting resources. Our field representatives evaluate the communications center, looking at the number of operators at the center; the telephone service, including the number of telephone lines coming into the center; and the listing of emergency numbers in the telephone book. Field representatives also look at the dispatch circuits and how the center notifies firefighters about the location of the emergency.

Engine companies
Fifty percent of the overall grading is based on the number of engine companies and the amount of water a community needs to fight a fire. ISO reviews the distribution of fire companies throughout the area and checks that the fire department tests its pumps regularly and inventories each engine company's nozzles, hoses, breathing apparatus, and other equipment.

ISO also reviews the fire-company records to determine:

type and extent of training provided to fire-company personnel
number of people who participate in training
firefighter response to emergencies
maintenance and testing of the fire department's equipment

Water supply
Forty percent of the grading is based on the community's water supply. This part of the survey focuses on whether the community has sufficient water supply for fire suppression beyond daily maximum consumption. ISO surveys all components of the water supply system, including pumps, storage, and filtration. To determine the rate of flow the water mains provide, we observe fire-flow tests at representative locations in the community. Finally, we evaluate the distribution of fire hydrants.

Lake Michigan water from the DWC is the same inside the village limits. Therefore 40% is the same there.

Unlike Naperville, the Glen Ellyn department doesn't have an annual report on-line so no stats are readily available. Since it is a not for profit and not a governmental body, it is not subject to foia. We know the total number of calls was 1200 for all reasons in 2006 http://glenellynfire.com/2007funddrive.shtml for a population of 27,300 in the village. But we don't know how many are unincorporated. There are 2500 parcels of unincorporated land served by the dept. http://www.glenellyn.org/2009/Fire%20Company%20SSA.html If one says 3 per parcel, that adds an additional 7500. Estimated cost of the GE dept is $1,377,000. http://www.glenellyn.org/2009/Fire%20Company%20SSA.html Cost per call is $530. Calls per person is .034.

Calls in Naperville and unincorporated areas serviced by Naperville were 12,975 in 2008. There are 146,000 in the area serviced. Cost of Dept in 2008 was 31,000,000. Calls per person is .089 [.081 in 2006](2.6 times more than GE). Cost per call is $2620 or 5 times more. All figures from budget http://naperville.il.us/emplibrary/FY10AnnualOperatingBudget.pdf

I guess the question is whether you can serve a population of 146,000, 35 sq. miles, and 12,975 calls with a largely volunteer dept. GE has 4 full time employees including the chief. I can't find any stats that say the population of existing volunteer depts.

The only other means of comparison is the ISO. It is said that a decrease in rating number brings decrease in fire premiums, but I know of and can find no study on the question.

The city should inform the public what amount of tax it needs to place on each household ($100, $200, whatever) and what services will be cut if it doesn't get it. The city should then put a referendum up for us to vote on. We either decide to pay more taxes or lose city services. We make the decision ourselves. We live with our own decision. Let the majority decide.

Enough,

Are you aware that Naperville and Glen Ellyn are not a good comparison as Glen Ellyn still uses volunteer fire fighters?

How does Naperville compare with Glen Ellyn in fire statistics:

Enough, you need to pick a halfway reasonable comparison city. Honestly, Glen Ellyn, land-locked at 6.6 miles and 27,000 residents is hardly comparable to Naperville at almost 40 square miles and 145,000 residents. Get Real.

A SIMPLE QUESTION

How does Naperville compare with Glen Ellyn in fire statistics:

Damage from Fire
Deaths and injuries
Any other MEANINGFUL statistic

Then let's compare the cost of the two systems. A costly full time Naperville Department and the long term, pride of the community "on-call" department in Glen Ellyn.

If Naperville adopated the Glen Ellyn method, the roads could be paved in gold!!!!

CIJ,

The fire department is a good example of a lot of waste. Many people probably don't realize it, but there are a heck of a lot of firefighters who work for 2 fire departments. The typical shift is 24 on and 48 off. During the 48 hours off there are one heck of a lot of them who go to another town and do another 24 hours on and then only take 24 off before coming back to work at Naperville.

For the life of me I don't know how it is humanly possible to punch out and then punch in at the next job on time... supervision is blatantly looking the other way and the taxpayers are getting shortchanged by some amount of time.

I'm not sure if this should be reclassified as a part-time job or if the fire department simply needs to go to a model of 48 on and 24 off if that is what these guys are doing anyway. I think if an independent study was done it would turn up that even those fire fighters who don't work for another fire department still have something else going on their 48 hours off which still leaves unsettled whether or not this is a full time or part time job.

For those who are double dipping by working for two fire departments I sure would like to know three things:
1. how do medical and other benefits get treated since there are two employers,
2. how is retirement benefits calculated since they might be retiring from two cities,
and
3. who is looking the other way when there is a large scale problem and reserves have to be called back in and this person can't respond because they are on the clock somewhere else?

GOVERNMENTS NEED TO CUT BACK IN BAD TIMES

http://www.suburbanchicagonews.com/napervillesun/news/west/1805477,6_4_NA04_WESTCOLUMN_S1-091004.articleas


Below is the link and an opinion expressed by Opinion Editor Tim West in the Naperville Sun that I felt was right on the mark. Many readers are underestimating the influence of this blog site or appearing at the podium in City Council Meetings to speak and be heard especially in large numbers.

I asked Editor Tim West to please start discussing the budget instead of his cats, the arts, and Oprah's Parade. Since my request he has written 2 opinions about the budget. The first very soft and the second almost right on the money. He has to the best of my knowledge, in reading him usually on a delayed basis to see if there is still a pulse, never done back to back articles on the budget in 36 years. Honestly, I have never seen him do one but I could have missed it. I think this is PROOF that Sun Officials are reading this blog site and can be influenced to help us in worthy causes. Former Host Ted Slovick once said if we got the bus rolling, the Naperville Sun would get on the bus. I think we have the bus rolling towards City Hall and the Naperville Sun has kept its word and decided to jump on. So persistence and perseverance pays.

There will be naysayers that will say this is just a conincidence that happens every 35-40 years. Well, if it is a conincidence, I will take a conincidence. What matters is we are making progress in the demolition processes of the fiscally irresponbile ways of City Hall. It is nice to have Opinion Editor Tim West on board. He is so convervative and establishment, I suspect his influence will be enormous on the folks in this town and City Hall.

Keep writing folks. They are reading and they may even be listening.

Below is a summarized version of the Opinion of Tim West in respect to Moderator Magee who does not like anything reprinted in full. But again here is the link to it if you have the time and choose to read it in full.

http://www.suburbanchicagonews.com/napervillesun/news/west/1805477,6_4_NA04_WESTCOLUMN_S1-091004.article

========================================================================================================================================

GOVERNMENTS NEED TO CUT BACK IN BAD TIMES

October 4, 2009

Basically, things often, though not always, go at such a snail's pace through bodies such as the Naperville City Council, both school boards and the Naperville park board that if you pay attention to the process all the way it can be likened to being nibbled to death by a duck.

So as the City Council inches toward what it is going to do about its projected deficit -- be that cut services, increase taxes or some combination of both -- slow in this case translates as deliberate.

Approving the city's budget is one of those times when a councilman truly earns his pittance of a salary, and the city staff goes all out to give the council a smorgasbord of ways to approach making revenues match expenses.

But, with the economy taking the nose dive that it has, it's a job that has never been more challenging than it is now.

Generally, Naperville city councils have been able to sit around fat and happy while scads of new development coupled with inflation of real estate prices have boosted the city's total assessed valuation -- a happy, at least for the city, phenomenon that seemed like it never would end.

But when the local economy depends in large part on building and development and that takes a nose dive, the effect can be devastating.

As the council juggles raising taxes with cutting services, I would like to suggest that this is the time for the city (not to mention other local governmental bodies) to suck it up and cut spending -- much as a great many residents are doing.

(Can anyone believe these are the words of Mr. West..WOW!...CIJ)

It's obviously not pleasant to think of Naper Settlement or the libraries being open for fewer days in the week, or city employees losing their jobs or having their wages reduced, but the reality of the situation is that these are the things that are happening in private life all over the United States, including Naperville.


(Maybe Mr. West finally tuned into CNBC and CNN...kudos to him...late is better than never....CIJ.)


If you haven't lost your job or had your salary cut yet, probably the guy down the street has.

Even those of us who didn't contribute to the orgy of overspending and bad investments that brought the economy to its knees are having to pay the cost. That has to include government as well.

(Nice job...you surpassed anything I could say by implying our fiscally irresponsible folks at City Hall are involved in an ORGY of sorts....I can not wait to read your next column, Mr. West. You get your A+++ for Sunday's column....CIJ)


Contact Tim West at west@scn1.com and praise him for his MASTERPIECE and ask him to stay at it. We need him on board. It is not easy to shake City Hall, but we must, to get the message across and avoid Chapter 9 bankruptcy to our beloved City of Naperville and possible foreclosure and bankruptcy to ourselves.

Please be heard tomorrow at 7pm before the City Council at City Hall in the Council Chambers.

========================================================================================================================================

The post above is correct.

While all of us, including City Council, can scrub the numbers for potential cuts; it begs the question, what do we have the City Manager and Dept. Managers for?

Perhaps across the board 10% cuts are the way to go?

I would still keep the list of potential cuts and measure them against what the managers come up with, but I wouldn't let them off the hook as managers. If they can't manage to the resources, get new managers.

Again, if the City continues down path of least resistance, shafting the employees who haven't joined unions to pacify the unionized workers is a recipe for disaster. All employees will simply join the unions and effectively paralyze the city.

If the problem cost areas are the unionized employees, then explain to them that the US is bankrupt with Naperville following close behind. If the Unions can't understand that there is no more money, take the strike.

Caterpillar showing some spine and standing up to their unions is the reason they are still a great company and why GM needed an $80 billion dollar welfare payment from the Feds to keep the doors open a little longer as a reward to the UAW union brothers who along with failed management drove the worlds greatest company into the ground.

Aurora and Elgin were once great cities with great tax and industrial bases, the road to becoming third world cities was paved with lots of bad decisions and wrong turns.

Despite our incompetent, corrupt, failing and now bankrupt Federal Government, the city can continue to prosper or at least remain solvent while we pray for Change in DC. It's not clear that either of the political parties can deliver anything other than more of the same failed big government, cheap labor, social engineering policies.

The city council really does need to begin planning for possible Federally induced disasters like:

*Further currency collapse

*China and Japan turning off the Fed's credit card which is how they are paying the bills.

*Hyper inflation if the Feds continue to print money, I wish I could print money to pay my bills when I overspend.

*Interest rates jumping to Jimmy Carter levels of 12%

*A second round of asset value deflation as houses continue their move back to market sustainable prices, another 20-30% drop from current values is likely. Fanni, Freddi, Barney, ACORN, community re-investment, FHA etc etc etc it's still going on.

Anon –

I’m not trying to give the city a laundry list of services to cut and I think anyone has to be delusional to think that this blog has any bearing on what happens at city hall.

That being said, the leaf collection example I put forward was just that—an example. It shows that the city could get out of the business of doing something to reduce the budget. The same service could be offered by a private company and the fees would be born only by those actually using the service and not the rest of the city. And I don’t think anyone doubts the private sector could offer the service for less than the city’s costs.

All I asked was, what other services could this work for? Perhaps your proposed incentives could also be given to city managers who figure out what the city does less efficiently than the private sector. Just a thought.

T.B.

I, for one, am GLAD the firefighters are not out working during the night - that means there were no fires or disasters for them to deal with. They are 'on duty' and have to remain 'on call' in the event they are needed. They have gone through rigorous training in the event their services are needed and should be compensated. Why is that difficult to understand? We should consider ourselves fortunate. Why made snide, ridiculous comments like, "Let us close 5 stations at least after midnight when nothing happens in NaperPerfectVille and see if the world will still turn. Trust me it will still turn every 24 hours." If you are trying to prove a point and align others in the community, an attitude like this undermines your own cause and keeps people away.

"I think we need to terminate 100 of the 200 fire fighters...If any dept. needs to be cut the FD needs it the most. They spend 23 hours a day doing nothing. Everyone knows that. They get paid while sleeping. There is a good chance tonight being a Sunday not one of the 10 fire stations will be interrupted and the fire fighters will sleep like lambs while being paid handsomely. Let us close 5 stations at least after midnight when nothing happens in NaperPerfectVille and see if the world will still turn."

CIJ- It is ridiculous statements like this that will turn a deaf ear to your cause. If there is a cost saving program anywhere in the US where fire personnel work 8 hour shifts, therefor not needing to sleep on duty, enlighten us. That would certainly help resolve some of your resentment and give us all a break from your unreasonable argument.

It has been done many times, but I will once again point out the fact that every village idiot here knows that the local fire department requires that their employees be firefighters AND paramedics. So they aren't just sleeping away waiting for fires, they are waiting for you to have a heart attack, your neighbor to get up in the middle of the night and trip over the dog, your cousin to have a seizure, or your local drunk to hit a tree on the way home from his favorite watering hole. The list goes on and on.

Part of the reason I live here is for this benefit. Many years ago, I was the first on the scene of a motorcycle accident in rural Michigan. The poor guy had obviously broken his femur and when the local contracted ambulance arrived 15 minutes later it had EMT personnel, not qualified paramedics and they could not even administer a narcotic pain killer to that man. I decided then and there that since most accidents happen within a few miles from home, I would never live in an area that did not have a paramedic program.

Here is a thought for you, maybe we could have taxpayers like you, who don't want these services, sign up for a lower tax rate and we could have the city contract with a private ambulance service to respond to your home and any other residence on the savings tier. I will continue to subscribe to the premium tier. You can bag your leaves and I will rake them to the curb. You can hire someone to pick up your garbage, recycling, brush and when you need the police to investigate the burglary to your home, they can send the County Sheriff.

You call for 10 percent cuts and as I recall, the City cut about 50 positions last year which is about 5 percent of their 1000 personnel, so let's keep that up. Maybe another 50 would not result in significant service cuts. Forget the new sales tax, we need spending here.

Yeah, we need to put a lid on taxes but I would like to see what the school district is doing about it since most of my money goes to THEM.

PS, I think you are low on the leaf collection cost estimate. You always throw these numbers out there like it is gospel. Didn't you check with Dick on that? I see these guys coming around for at least a month, 3 to 4 times and they advertise for temporary workers to help with that and you think it only costs $100,000????

By Anonymous on October 4, 2009 12:11 PM

the bureaucrats at city hall have set up an incestuous culture and they simply lack the objectivity much less incentive to find ways to really make the significant cuts that will truly make a difference. the city council can waste hundreds of hours pouting over budget details and wrangle with things like travel expenses, magazine subscriptions, office supplies, perk use of city vehicles, etc or they can get moving and simply take a 10% across the board cut which means everyone, every department, every budget item, every expense is treated fairly and equally.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------=

They have no choice but to listen.

Recommedations like those of the brother of a fire fighter that we should look into abolishing leaf collection as a way of saving money border on a joke. Leaf collection is a nice service done once a year for probably a 100k a year. That would leave us with a 14 million budget deficit instead of a 14.1 million deficit. It will not solve any problems but possibly cover what amounts to a pimple.

This service if eliminated does not save the taxpayers money. If implemented the taxpayers will have to pay privately for this same service. So this is tantatamount to a stupid useless savings that may benefit the looks of the balance sheet a tiny bit but would not benefit the taxpapyers.

But slashing the wages, pensions and expenses 10% as I mentioned in Proposal 2 of my 22 proposals and as you and others have also mentioned makes much more sense and will result in true savings that don't cost the taxpayer elsewhere.

Besides those savings I think we need to terminate 100 of the 200 fire fighters and 90% of the building inspectors. And since the legal department likes to delegate cases like the Napergate Man, Fursteanu and probably the Homeless Striker Mr. Huber, why not dismantle it and let the City Manager delegate the cases to outside law firms without paying $1.4 million annually to a dept. to simply delegate cases.

We need true savings....not superficial nonsensical leaf savings as is being suggested by a very biased brother of a fire fighter. His suggestion is nothing but a smokescreen to take the heat off the fire department and give them an exemption from any cuts. If any dept. needs to be cut the FD needs it the most. They spend 23 hours a day doing nothing. Everyone knows that. They get paid while sleeping. There is a good chance tonight being a Sunday not one of the 10 fire stations will be interrupted and the fire fighters will sleep like lambs while being paid handsomely. Let us close 5 stations at least after midnight when nothing happens in NaperPerfectVille and see if the world will still turn. Trust me it will still turn every 24 hours.

As you said these 10% cuts have to be across the board with not one single exception or exemption no matter how well you are connected to the Establishment Powers that run this town like a Fiefdom out of the 17 Century.

Only than can we see the deficits eliminated in a permanent sense instead of popping up on an annual basis in one form or another.

forget trying to give anyone in the city a laundry list of areas to cut. first off there is no guarantee they are either reading this forum or will follow anyone's advice. from a human perspective they have no motivation to listen to any of this the way things are structured at present. those who have to manage the budget at city hall take their signals from the city manager who, in turn, gets his marching instructions from the city council.

the bureaucrats at city hall have set up an incestuous culture and they simply lack the objectivity much less incentive to find ways to really make the significant cuts that will truly make a difference. the city council can waste hundreds of hours pouting over budget details and wrangle with things like travel expenses, magazine subscriptions, office supplies, perk use of city vehicles, etc or they can get moving and simply take a 10% across the board cut which means everyone, every department, every budget item, every expense is treated fairly and equally.

oh, and for the record I am all for developing an incentive pay plan to reward city managers who are able to roll up their sleeves and find additional, PERMANENT budget cuts that exceed the 10%. an important aspect of the discussion has to center around this concept of "maintaining existing service levels". while that sounds nice at face value the reality is that some of the existing service levels are fraught with waste and inefficiency. when budget cuts become necessary it is also a good time to take a hard look at what kind of service levels we can afford in the current environment. more importantly there should be NO SACRED COWS.

Anon --

While many mom & pops have moved out, some remain (Sugar Monkey, Baubles, etc). I was trying to show that, though high, the rents must not be "unsustainable" as more and more businesses move into downtown.

T.B.

By Anonymous on October 3, 2009 8:33 PM
Fire and Police Salaries:

*The USA, and Illinois are bankrupt, Naperville is headed that way.

With a $120 million accrued actuarial pension liability deficit, Naperville is a good as bankrupt. They are temporarily surviving because only a handful of fire fighters and police officers have retired. Once the full surge of retirement comes, there will be no money to pay them. That is for sure!

*The sheep have been shorn, with under and un-employment between 17 and 20% there is nothing left to sheer. Almost all of the unemployment numbers are in the private sector, governments are still adding jobs.

Yes the private sector has 9.8% unemployment and 17% underemployment according to CNBC on Friday, while the public sector is adding jobs, giving raises and Fatter than Fat Pensions....all at taxpayer expense.

*Private sector employees, if they have a job, have had pay and benefits cuts, 15% seems typical talking to my friends.

Yes, 15% does seem typical. And all we are asking our city employees to do is take a 10% across the board pay cut. Instead they are getting raises and ignoring our massive deficits.


*Even if Naperville had the lowest paid Fire and Police in the USA we are still broke, out of money, nearing the edge. Keeping up with DG is irrelevant.

Well spoken! Excellent point! It is like me wanting a huge McMansion because my neighbor can afford one and has one. I can not afford one so I live within my limits. We can not afford to pay starting 22 year old fire fighters 60k annually. They will line up to work for 45k at that age so we are paying more than we have to and a lot more than we can afford.

If the Unions are unable to comprehend the situation and work with the City to avoid bankruptcy, then City Council needs to grow some spine and take the strikes, same goes for the bloated school districts.

Yes, we do need to take the strike and show the police and fire departments we can survive without them. In the old days, if you were injured they put you in the back of a car or truck and took you to the emergency room. You usually got there quicker than any ambulance could get you there. I have lived in 2 subdivsions with 300-400 homes each and not one home in either subdivision has ever had a fire in 40 years. Two hundred fire fighters just for an occassional traffic accident is a bit too many. With air bags we are not seeing the serious injuries of a decade or two ago. Why are we not making any downward adjustments in the number of fire fighters these days?


If maintaining public safety is the concern, have the County Sheriff deputize hundreds of Naperville residents and give us either open or concealed carry permits and a badge.

Yes, deputizing some Citizens is a great idea. We have the red light photos to catch traffic violators and we really don't need all these cops. Let us cut half the cops like Toldeo did. Nothing went wrong in Toledo despite losing half their cops.

I am ready to be a volunteer fire fighter. You have fun in the fire house for 23 hours a day and maybe go out an hour a day on calls. Some days no calls come in. I am sure I can blog from the fire house as much as I do from my home if I don't watch TV. It is hard to believe we pay fire fighters 60k to start and nurses are lucky to get 40k. Nurses are on their feet their entire shifts. Fire fighters less than 5% of their shifts. Nurses do not get any pension. Allowing them to retire with 75% pensions at age 52 is ridiculous. They do not experience the wear and tear of factory workers......not even one tenth!

Fire and Police Salaries:

*The USA, and Illinois are bankrupt, Naperville is headed that way.

*The sheep have been shorn, with under and un-employment between 17 and 20% there is nothing left to sheer. Almost all of the unemployment numbers are in the private sector, governments are still adding jobs.

*Private sector employees, if they have a job, have had pay and benefits cuts, 15% seems typical talking to my friends.

*Even if Naperville had the lowest paid Fire and Police in the USA we are still broke, out of money, nearing the edge. Keeping up with DG is irrelevant.

If the Unions are unable to comprehend the situation and work with the City to avoid bankruptcy, then City Council needs to grow some spine and take the strikes, same goes for the bloated school districts.

If maintaining public safety is the concern, have the County Sheriff deputize hundreds of Naperville residents and give us either open or concealed carry permits and a badge.

BTW we should stop building wooden fire trap buildings for seniors that require a fire house within 1000 yards. The owner operators of the multi story wooden buildings can hire their own personal fire person 7x24 to wait for the fire on site.

By Linden Oaks is calling.... on October 3, 2009 7:23 AM

This is a citizen journalist huh? What a classic statement which shows just how little the CIJ knows about any topic he/she/it talks about. You assume everything is the truth if it is negative and a complete lie without ever doing any research yourself. And, I would gladly take your million dollar bet but I assume you dont have a million dollars.


________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Linden Oaks,

I am not going to research every comment posted. Moderatore Magee does not research every comment either and it is his blog site. He tends not to post blatant lies but sometimes they slip by him.

"Enough" in my opinion was not lying. He could still be right or misunderstood the situation. Anonymous indicates something similar happened. If I mention something that another blogger said and give him credit for it, which I did, that does not go towards my credibility. It goes to his or hers. I never said I researched it. I simply said another blogger said so.

You need to help Anonymous find the other 86 fire departments that pay more than $59,909 or what NPD fire fighters receive in salary before you put your foot in your mouth as he did with his misrepresentations.

Don't worry about me having my million. If you pay 70k in real estate taxes and don't have any mortgages or loans on any property you have a million to satisfy the bet in the event you lose. I already indirectly revealed that and I am not disclosing anything else.

So I have no problem coming up with 2 million so I can separate you from a million and Anonymos from another million in a double bet. I guess we can not give our money to Moderator Magee to hold as he will take the 4 million and flee....that assumes you and Anonymous each have a million to bet and are not all smoking talk.

But on a serious note, what is wrong with you guys or gals. We have a $14.1 million operating budget deficit. Where do you expect the deficit to be remedied from...only one department! We already showed if we dismantled the entire legal department we would actually eliminate a little less than 10% of this $14.1 million shortfall. If we got rid of every building inspector that may save another 10%.

Unless the police officers and fire fighters stop thinking their behinds don't smell like the rest of us, we can not close this budget deficit unless we increase taxes substantially. The residents have spoken and do not want increased taxes. The natives said they would have to leave town for retirement if we experience one more tax increase. Do we not have a duty to watch out for the true natives of Naperville? Do we not have a duty to keep this town afforadable for them? What right do we have to "steal" it from them due to the shenanigans employed by our City Bosses which amount to GREED for themselves.

Let us cut wages by 10% for all 1100 city employees without exception. Let us demand each department reduce expenses by 10%. Maybe they will start doing simple things like turning the lights off and adjusting the thermostat when they go home instead of leaving the heat or air conditioning blasting away full thrust from 5pm to 8am when the building is virtually deserted except for one lonely security guard. We could always buy him a space heater for a hundred bucks. It is much cheaper than heating an empty enormous sized Taj Mahal City Hall all night long.

It is time folks came up with proposals to reduce the deficit. Saying someone makes more money in another town is tantamount to crying like a baby. Oh, he's got a toy and I want the same toy. Oh, she's has got a candy bar and where is mine. That is what you guys are doing. Crying and whining like babies who need their diapers changed.

We can not worry about what other towns are doing. They apparently have money and we don't. Maybe their pension managers did not lose $20.55 million like our pension managers did. Maybe their City Bosses are more frugal than ours. Maybe more fiscally responsible than ours.

I think it is very selfish for the fire fighters and their supporters to expect everyone else to make sacrifices while they don't. They won't even apolgize for the $9.8 million of our money they lost with their risky investments in the Fire Pension Fund. They want us to replace this money quietly. Just like a child who misplaced his money and cries for replacement.

The fire fighters are not babies. They are not children. They are not teenagers. They are fully grown men and women who selected their fund managers who lost their money. They made poor choices. They need to accept responsibility for their losses. They need to be fair and increase their contibutions from 9.45% to triple that instead of expecting the taxpayers to contribute 25% plus as we are currently doing on their behalf at great expense to our own families.

This INSANITY has to end soon. You guys can babble all you want. You can attack my persona instead of my honest message. It won't do any good. I will continue hammering away at you and the residents will eventually see who is telling the truth. Who is trying to cut government waste. Who is trying to lower their tax bills. It certainly is not you spoiled folks who feel a sense of entitlement at the expense of the rest of us.

CIJ

Anonymous,

You provided 14 of your alleged 100 in the Chicgoland area that pay more than Naperville assuming your information is accurate and not embellished. I will give you the benefit of the doubt. The last time I gave a blogger the benefit of the doubt, I got attacked. So how can you believe anyone on this blog site. You and Enough have to hash out your discrepancy and leave me out of your credibility issues.

My bet for $1,000,000 is still on.

If you want to make the bet give Moderator Magee a million and I will give him a million to make our bet official. Talk is cheap.

The bet is on.

I did my research and there are NOT 100 fire departments in the Chicagoland Area that pay more than Naperville. I am 100% sure. You got 86 more to go. Only 14 means Naperville is amongst the highest out of the 200 Fire Departments in the Chicagoland Region as I have been saying over and over again.

Good luck. If you stop I will assume you could not find the other 86 and you are all talk. Full of hot air like a balloon ready to IMPLODE!

CIJ

PS. And remember there is another issue here....AFFORDABILITY.

Maybe these towns are ficsally responsible and do not have $14.1 million operating budget deficits and $120 million accrued actuarial pension liability deficits. Maybe they have surpluses and are taking care of their fire fighters. That is their RIGHT. We are in big holes financially and that is documented. We have to pay what we can afford to pay and live within our means. Period!

As far as the comments I made about Downers Grove, another blogger was the source of them. I assumed s/he was telling the truth as I had no reason to doubt her/him.
__________________________________________________________________

This is a citizen journalist huh? What a classic statement which shows just how little the CIJ knows about any topic he/she/it talks about. You assume everything is the truth if it is negative and a complete lie without ever doing any research yourself. And, I would gladly take your million dollar bet but I assume you dont have a million dollars.

I made the following statements October 2nd at 122am....
"There are over 100 other towns, cities and fire protection districts, in the chicago area, that pay the same or more than Naperville does." and "I can easily find equal and comparable pay scales through out the Chicago land area." and "Naperville's firefighters are in the MIDDLE range of comparable pay rates."

CIJ you said that I could not prove my statement. Here is list of 30 that I put together from each of the firefighter union contracts, that I found on line, for each of the fire departments listed below. If you want more, I will keep looking, but I think I proved my point.

The pay listed is "APPLES FOR APPLES." What I mean by this is... Naperville requires Paramedic and State firefighter certificates as part of their base pay. Other towns and fire district also require the same certificates BUT do not list them in their base pay. Other towns list these requirements as "STIPENDS" or "PARAMEDIC PAY" or "LONGEVITY PAY." I did my best to find these stipends and added them into each towns base pay scale. By doing this, Naperville's Firefighter Paramedic pay is equally compared to other towns Firefighter Paramedic pay......

First number listed is first years pay and the second number is top pay....

Algonquin 52332.00
68380.00

Alsip 63832.00
73554.00

Arlington Hgts 62091.00
84681.00

Aurora 68478.41
86158.30

Bartlett 57126.00
80515.00

Batavia 55300.00
72274.00

Bedford Park 56351.00
77525.00

Bellwood 58100.00
72625.00

Bensenville 56167.00
85640.00

Berwyn 62141.00
74569.00

Bloomingdale 57194.00
82378.00

Bolingbrook 65775.00
78881.00

Buffalo Grove 58381.00
80934.00

Carol Stream 60235.00
84240.00

Elmhurst 59393.00
76317.00

Evanston 63683.00
86531.00

Gurnee 59221.00
84531.00

Joliet 58001.00
90129.00

LaGrange 56557.00
79108.00

Lemont 55897.00
76396.00

Morton Grove 63826.00
78599.00

Mount Prospect 62146.00
84070.00

Northbrook 65769.00
82747.00

Orland Park 60385.00
73627.00

Plainfield 53315.00
81617.00

Skokie 60485.00
74024.00

Streamwood 57938.00
75054.00

Tri-State FPD 56321.00
71302.00

Wheaton 60095.00
80407.00

Winnetka 60055.00
78456.00

By Annonymous on October 2, 2009 6:56 PM
CIJ -

You make it sound as though the only reason the City is looking at cutting spending is because of what you post and your incredible insight into this city's waste.

I have been blogging here for 3.5 years and have been trying to influence the City to reduce waste. I was one of the organizers of the TAX PROTEST against City Hall. My strategy has not been to take credit but to influence bloggers and other residents to become more involved in the battle to pressure City Hall to become fiscally responsible.

Do I believe I have influenced City Hall. Yes, I do and have. Do I believe I have exposed them. Yes, I do and have. Do I do it just to take credit? Absolutely not! If I wanted credit I would reveal my name and go public. If I have not revealed my identity in 3.5 years you can be assured I am not revealing my identity....ever! I am fighting anonymously for a cause and not for credit. I just want taxpayers to know we can make a difference. That is why I say what I say. And I know it is true since I have been tod by numerous residents that officials read this blog site. Even Experienced who debated against me has now provided evidence that City Officials read this blog site. As far as I am concerned he was very pro city but is upset with them for disclosure reasons. I have been upset with them for disclosure reasons dating to the Napergate Saga when they destroyed or lost all the records. Kudos to Experienced for finally smelling the coffee. I always stated history has a way of repeating itself and that it is important to understand the history of this town to understand the present and future. Tigers just don't change their stripes and that is why we may need a change in City Hall if we are going to make the necessary changes to become fiscally sound again


IN TRUTH - the city has looked at a multitude of ways to cut spending ..... that started WAY before you posted on this thread ..... so I stand behind the statement that you are giving yourself too much credit.

Really! If they had been looking at a multitude of ways since I began exposing them 3.5 years ago we would not be looking at a $14.1 million budget deficit and a $120 million actuarial pension liability deficit. It is not like they were not warned before me that they were heading the wrong way. I read the 44 Napergate Ad sequence(2 were missing) at Nichols Library and the city was blasted month after month for its fiscal irresponsility. It is all documented. They ignored the Napergate ads and they ignored me and other bloggers. They don't listen. No matter how much revenue came in, no matter how many McMansions were built, no matter how many new businesses opened up, they continued to squander taxpayer money. Are you going to deny that? Blocks and blocks went through infill demolitions resulting in McMansions paying up to 9 times in real estate tax the old homes on the lots paid. Where did the money go? No one knows.

The city has not started to cut spending in a serious way to make a difference. The City Manager even admitted the changes have not been noticeable to the taxpayers.


Virtually all of the "suggestions" you made have either been considered, or are being considered ....

That is hogwash and you know it. Those are my orginal suggestions develped on this blog site over time....all documented. If they have been considered or being considered that is proof that City Officials are reading this blog site. Thanks for pointing this out.

that is with the exception of cutting back on public safety - I doubt that was ever SERIOUSLY considered, but I can't speak to that.

Public safety is by far the biggest part of the budget and 90% of the pension liability deficit. How can you really fix a problem when you ignore the part that is causing the biggest part of the fiscal irresponsibility possibly with the exception of the building inspectors who are hanging on to vest in the pension system. How many more times do I have to talk about 14 potted plants sitting in a jury box while 300 residents march and plead guilty to 75 dollar traffic tickets whether they are there or not there? If someone does not plead guilty, there is something called a continuance which will still afford us the opportuntity to bring in cops on a case by case basis instead of wholesale for no reason. How many more times do I have to mention the 12-17 cops that hang around downtown Naperville padding the payroll and pension while checking the few girls in high heels and mini skirt out after 10pm on summer weekdays.

There simply isn't any point in getting so excited that you start to believe the City Manager is making specific comments because of anything you might or might not say on a blog site.

As you believe the City Manager does not care about my comments, I believe he does care for my comments and better care if he wants to hold on to his job. The city manager knows higher taxes are not acceptable after reading this blog site.....even from the natives of this town who had enough.

The city manager has not yet called for pay-cuts. He has been giving raises. Watch him start calling for pay-cuts sooner than later. I don't care who causes him to do the right thing as long as he does the right thing. I don't care who receives credit. I just can't bear any more taxes and neither can most people in this town. So please don't try to change the focus from the real problem of high taxes and government waste to who is taking credit and who is not. How many times has Moderator Magee told you folks to focus on the subjects instead of me? No one appears to listen to him.

Here is my theory as why no one listens to him. My message is irrefutable. It is truthful. It can not be disputed. Thus if you can not dispute the message, you try to assassinate the character of the messenger. This is a well known strategy in politics and I will not let you or anyone else get away with it and get off topic.


If it makes you feel better, or more important, then go for it - just don't mistake it for the truth.

There is no mistaking the truth about our fiscally irresponsible leaders in City Hall. The facts are in black and white. I am sorry you are in so much DENIAL. It would also help your credility if you would choose a moniker besides Anonymous so we can hold you accountable for your remarks and credibility. You are basicallly unaccountable right now just like your buddies in City Hall. Spineless just as they are....if I were making a bet, I would bet you are a Fire Fighter who can not admit he is a Fire Fighter. That is very sad that you are in denial of even your career. You feel guilty being a fire fighter since you know 90% of the times you guys do NOTHING. And yet you all managed to rack $2.5 million of OT last year. You are like so many in City Hall who play during regular time and work during OT. That is why we are in such a FISCAL FIASCO.

CIJ

TB

Based on observation, Downers Grove has a lot of little businesses and mom and pop operations that moved out of the Naperville Downtown years ago complaining about the rent.

If there is someone out there with access to the MLS for commercial space, please clarify. If the rents are the same, I would love to know how the little guys in DG do it and our can't.

CIJ -

I said you were giving yourself too much credit because of this statement you made:

This is a very interesting and true statement that was delivered last night after the City Manager probably read my 22 points about reducing government waste before increasing taxes to the very hard pressed Naperville Residents.
How ironic that after my 1:53pm blog yesterday, they changed their focus from increasing taxes to government cut backs. A 180 degree turn or possibly a bluff to pretend that they are looking at government waste finally. Yes, our officials do read Magee's Blog Site. We can express our grievances here if we don't want to take the podium for 3 minutes the first and third Tuesdays of each month. I encourage both. City Council meetings have almost been deserted lately. Probably because the City Council stopped listening many years ago after the Napergate Man stopped bringing large crowds due to his apparent retirement from the ugly political scene.


You make it sound as though the only reason the City is looking at cutting spending is because of what you post and your incredible insight into this city's waste. IN TRUTH - the city has looked at a multitude of ways to cut spending ..... that started WAY before you posted on this thread ..... so I stand behind the statement that you are giving yourself too much credit. Virtually all of the "suggestions" you made have either been considered, or are being considered .... that is with the exception of cutting back on public safety - I doubt that was ever SERIOUSLY considered, but I can't speak to that.

There simply isn't any point in getting so excited that you start to believe the City Manager is making specific comments because of anything you might or might not say on a blog site. If it makes you feel better, or more important, then go for it - just don't mistake it for the truth.

By Enough on September 29, 2009 12:29 AM
With Naperville 98% built out and in a no housing growth, why not lay off 90% of the building inspectors and all the layers of management. Why do we need 10 fire stations? Downers Grove closed one and is consolidating another. More waste.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Here is the source of the DG Fire Station Controversy. Don't try to tamper with my credibility based on what someone else said. You can hash it out with ENOUGH. I don't know the facts in that situation. Sorry! It could be a misundertanding between you 2 as what was going to happen and actually occurred. ENOUGH seems like an honest well intentioned blogger to ME.

By Anonymous on October 2, 2009 1:22 AM

There are over 100 other towns, cities and fire protection districts, in the chicago area, that pay the same or more than Naperville does.


________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

I believe your statement above is a blatantly and bluntly INCORRECT. I did some all night research which I posted on this Blog Site a little over a year or year and a half ago and I recall finding Naperville Firefighters to be the highest or one of the highest paid.....not only in Illinois but the nation.

I will bet you any amount of money up to one million dollars that you will not find 100 other towns, cities, and fire protection districts in the Chicago Area that pay the same or more than Naperville.

You seem like you are embellishing and spewing propaganda City of Naperville Style. Put your million against mine and let us make a bet and see who can make the other homeless and a neighbor of Mr. Huber.

As far as the comments I made about Downers Grove, another blogger was the source of them. I assumed s/he was telling the truth as I had no reason to doubt her/him. You gave me very good reason to doubt anything you said based on your INCORRECT statement that I reposted.(I will try to post the source of the Downers Grove information ASAP. I have no clue who is correct you or him/her. But it is important we all post ACCURATE INFORMATION since it does get passed on from poster to poster.)

I will not even bother to research anything you said since you appear not credible in my humble opinion..

And if what you are saying is true and DG is fiscally irresponsible, do we also have to be fiscally irresponsible. We should only pay what we can afford....not what we can NOT AFFORD! Firefighters who are all equally good and certified by the State work from as low to 20k to as high as 60k. The pay is based on the strength of the union in its negotiations with the City Council. Apparently our City Council is spineless in its negotiations with the P and F Unions. Maybe DG is too. So let us not look at spineless City Councils. Let us look at City Councils who had the spine and fortitude to stand up to P and F Unions. Ones that can show them the door when necessary.

We have huge deficits in Naperville in both the budget and pension systems.

Does DG have deficits? If they don't and can afford to, they should give fire fighters a starting salary of 100k if they like. That is between their City Officials and their residents. They have a right to do what they do. Towns like Stone Park, Cicero, Harvey, Melrose Park, Maywood, Bellwood and many others pay their POs and FFs between 20kto 30k to start based on some research I did last year. I am speaking from memory so I may be off on one town but I recall vividly my research. Does that give us a right to pay our firefighters ONLY 20k? I don't think so! Likewise, if a town pays their firefighters 100k, we are not required to pay our FFs 100k especially if we can not AFFORD to which is obvious since we have had Operating Budget Deficits 3 years going and pension deficits umpteen years going.

If other towns are fiscally responsible or irresponsbile is none of my business. I am a taxpayer in Napervile paying a burdensome $70k in real estate taxes that keep rising, and firefighters here are my business. The financial statement of Naperville indicates not only can we not afford this high pay but also indicates we can not afford 200 fire fighters anymore. We must lay some off soon.

My tenants are demanding rent reductions due to the economy. They tell me if I don't reduce the rent, they are moving out and in with their parents, friends or relatives. So I am reducing the rent and would like the taxes I pay reduced accordingly and not increased. If I reduce the rent, my property is worth less. So how can the city justify increased taxes on less assessed valuation which will be made official this March by Dupage County and the respective Township?

I am not picking on the firefighters or police officers. I am calling for a 10% reduction in pay for all 1100 employees who work for the City of Naperville without EXCEPTION. I do not favor a building inspector over a secretary over a police officer. All those who say I hate a certain group are spewing propaganda to protect their group. That is a weak argument to allege I am FULL OF HATE because I would like to balance the budget without increasing my taxes from 70k to 80k per year. I have numerous expenses including health and college besides real estaate taxes like every other resident in town. I am making much less than I made the year before and the year before that just like everyone else. So I can not justify, accept or tolerate higher taxes by fiscally irresponsible City Officials, Staff and Council.

Unemployment just hit 9.8% and underemployment just hit 17%. Both are on the rise. The average worker in the USA is now only working 33 hours a week instead of 40 because work is simply not available. Have our City Employees made similar sacrifices to those being made across the board and nationally. They are getting increases in pay. Can anyone actually believe that? That is why I am calling for the resignation of our fiscally irresponsible City Officials who are CLUELESS as to what is going on in this world. I think the FACTS bear out they are CLUELESS and I should not be attacked for speaking the TRUTH.

If a 10% reduction in pay which would also bring a 10% reduction in pension-payouts where we also have a very serious deficit, will not solve the problem, I suggest we have a 10% cut in each department except the BUILDING DEPARTMENT where I am calling for a 90% cut in staff since almost no one is building and Naperville is 98.5% developed. I would also call for the dismantling the LEGAL DEPT. unless they promise never to farm out cases again as they did in Napergate where they did not allege a conflict of interest and Fusrtenau where they did allege a conflict of interest. Huber vs Naperville is coming up and we need to know immediately if they are going to farm out this case or attempt to tackle it. If they farm it out, I would be asking the City Council to dissolve this department immediately and unconditionally for a $1.4 million in savings to the taxpayer.

(Imagine dismantling the entire legal dept would only eliminate 10% of the $14 million budget deficit. Hopefully, this will help residents understand and comprehend how drastic the cuts have to be across the board. We need 10 departments like the legal dept dismantled just to balance the budget...UNBELIEVABLE THE HOLE WE ARE IN. How did we get in such a DEEP HOLE?!?)

Just becasue my neigher owns a 3 million McMansion does not mean I am entilted to one because s/he has one. Maybe s/he can afford it. I know I can not. I live in an average home and I trying to get my kids through college with minimum loans. I have 4 to put through college(2 already in) and it is not easy when the City of Naperville and these colleges are trying to both clean the same BANK ACCOUNT out.

Same thing applies to the issue of Naperville FFs vs. DG FFs. Maybe they can afford 60k for starting salaries. We in Naperville are in a big hole and simply can not. Is that really not obvious to our city officials? Do they not comprehend the financial statements when they read them? Maybe they should all be forced to take some courses in accounting and finance which I once did in college. The courses are very helpful to understanding balance sheets, profit and loss reports, income statements, and above all DEFICITS which are popping out everywhere in Naperville Financials these days.

And a business is effected in a very minor way on insurance if a fire station is a little further away. You are attempting to sensationalize when you say businesses will go out of business just because a fire station is moved or relocated. Let us stick to the facts and stop embellishing and exaggerating.

If $100-200 more on an insurance policy is going to knock a business out, this business was already going out of business and is using the fire station as an excuse. I have owned businesses near fire stations and ones not so near to fire stations and the difference was never more than 5-10% on $2000-6000 dollar insurance policies. This in itself would never cause a business to go out of business. Why not cancel the business/property portion of your insurance instead of closing your business? Then you have a 99.5% chance of surviving as that is the odds of a chance of a fire. And you will save tons of money since you wll not have to pay out for insurance premiums. But to end your business because of high property insurance which is NOT REQUIRED is utter NONSENSE. Anyone with a logical mind if confronted between closing his business and having business insurance would choose not to have business insurance and hope he never sees a fire...and there is a great chance he will never see a fire as most businesses never experience a fire. Your workmen's compensation portion of your insurance will not be affected by a fire station moving, so I would very strongly recommend keep that as it once saved a business of mine from extinction due to a serious injury to an employee. It only cost me about $1400 a year and was worth the dough.

Really, your argument that a BUSINESS will close down because a Fire Department is moving to another location makes absolutely no sense. It is like committing suicide because of a fear that there is a 1 in a 200 chance that your building would burn in a fire. Not even you(the person) as I assume you have smoke detectors and alarms that will alert you in time to ge out. And if you have a sprinkler system, your business will most probably not even burn down or even have significant damage.

My friend, this is what I don't like. Hollow arguments to put fear in the public in order to make an exception for fire fighters. The burden of lay-offs and pay-cuts has to be shared equally by all employees including PUBLIC SAFETY EMPLOYEES. No exceptions so please stop making hollow arguments, insinuating, embellishing and exagerrating for that purpose. We know TB is biased because his brother is a fire fighter and that is undestandable. May, I ask what the root of your bias is. Are you a Naperville Fire Fighter?

Thank you!

CIJ

Anon 10/02/09 @ 9:23 AM –

“The bloated rents and cost structure for the Downtown are apparently unsustainable in today's economy and probably in any economy. Some of the restaurants will probably die, others with lower price points may replace them or perhaps we can get a grocery store, a movie theater and the mom and pop vendors back into the downtown after the rents drop.”

While the downtown businesses are certainly not doing well as a few years ago, there seems to be a never-ending line of bars/restaurants wanting to move into the downtown area. Peanuts moved into the space the sandwich shop was in. Red Door closed and Grumpy Bulldog moved in. Ted’s took over the former Oswald’s location. Jilly’s moved into where the music store used to be. Even Tessa’s will soon reopen as a new bar and grill (Blackfin, I think).

The rents can’t be unsustainable if new operations are moving in. I seem to recall the Sun did an article over the summer in which Naperville’s downtown rent was seen to be on par with other suburban downtown areas.

T.B.

Two points:

1. Naperville Govt Changes and Fire Safety costs

Naperville did make changes, they allowed developers to make multi-unit, multi story buildings out of wood instead of cement and masonry as was required years ago.

This allowed for extraordinary profits for the well connected developers and saddled the taxpayers with fire trap buildings including most of the old peoples homes built in the last 30 years. Can't wait til someone forgets the pan on the stove.

2. Eliminating taxes on the Bar District will increase business

Went out for a walk last Wednesday night, stopped by a bar-restaurant for 1 beer around 9pm. This place use to be packed on Wednesdays, I was one of five people in the place. Beer was half price at $3 for Sam Adams instead of $6. A 50% drop in price had no effect on business.

The bloated rents and cost structure for the Downtown are apparently unsustainable in today's economy and probably in any economy. Some of the restaurants will probably die, others with lower price points may replace them or perhaps we can get a grocery store, a movie theater and the mom and pop vendors back into the downtown after the rents drop.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

What part of "the Country is bankrupt and living on China's credit line" don't the elected officials and government employees not get?

What I said a year ago and restate today is this:

Salary freezes for all employees to avoid as many layoffs as possible and 10% reductions and pay freezes for managers. Layoffs with pay raises is both disgusting and immoral IMHO.

Illinoisans need to start looking at Michigan and asking if this is where we want to go, we are certainly on the same road and standing on the gas peddle.

The so called free trade which is actually called labor dis-inter-mediation AKA slave workers with no regulations for safety or environment was US policy under Bush and continues to be under change President Obama, both Progressives and "Free Traders".

The core of the Illinois economy is manufacturing, which is being exported one piece at a time.

MHB brought up the issue of exchanging “fee for service” vs taxes on the school thread (don’t ask why, who knows…).

On that thought, exchanging “fee for service” for taxes would indeed be a swap but MHB fails to see that the costs would be born solely by those who use the service. For instance, leaf pickup costs would be born by those with the most trees (through yard waste stickers) and would be “free” to those without trees. It would cost the city budget ZERO.

Plus, I’d be willing to bet MHB would prefer the leaf pickup be done by an hourly outside contractor rather than a city public works employee working towards their pension. Which do you think is more efficient? Which option costs the city ZERO?

If another city, such as Park Ridge, can decide to outsource leaf pick-up service maybe they’re on to something. What other services does Naperville provide which could be handled more efficiently by someone else?

Maybe more thought should be put into some people’s message, rather than labeling all other Napervillians as “clueless” in yet another senseless personal attack?

T.B.

Just found this while I was reviewing the proposed budget for the Village of Downers Grove (found on their web site). As long as CIJ has used Downers Grove as an example in many of his recent post, I thought many of you would find this fun.....

Downers Grove Firefighter starting pay $58,368 in 2009
$60,703 in 2010

Downers Grove Firefighter top pay $81,516 in 2009
$84,777 in 2010

Naperville Firefighter starting pay $58,734 in 2009
$59,909 in 2010

Naperville firefighter top pay $80,298 in 2009
$81,904 in 2010

CIJ has stated MANY times that firefighter pay in Naperville is higher than any other town in the Chicago area, and is one of the highest anywhere. Sorry, but I can easily find equal and comparable pay scales through out the Chicago land area. A public document used by the Naperville Firefighters union, and attached to the city council information covering the recently signed union contact, shows Naperville's firefighters are in the MIDDLE range of comparable pay rates. Also, the contact posted on the City of Naperville council website shows our firefighters taking a special overtime pay cut. Under the listing FLSA G7, they are getting paid half their regular pay for overtime. A town (Downers Grove) 1/3 the size of ours, and that runs 1/4 the number of emergency 911 calls, pays its firefighters more.

There are over 100 other towns, cities and fire protection districts, in the chicago area, that pay the same or more than Naperville does. Do you think for a minute that a professional trained firefighter/paramedic would continue to work for Naperville if you cut his yearly pay by $20,000. The qualified, trained and college degreed would go were the pays is. The bottom of the barrel individual, that could not get a job with any other fire department, would be all that we would have applying.

Since our firefighters are also paramedic, and since they are performing medical assessments (hands on touching, iv starting, and giving drugs to our families) I want someone I can trust. I want the well trained and professional people we have.

I am moving this post, and adding to it, from another thread. It was written in reply to CIJ and the statements made by CIJ that Downers Grove had closed and consolidated 2 other fire stations. NOT TRUE....
Hopefully this will be more on target with the topic of this thread.....


CIJ,
I would like to point out that you have made a BIG mistake... Downers grove has NOT closed any fire stations (in twenty year,see link below). Downers Grove just replaced their fire station number 2, at 55th and main, with a new LARGER admin station.
Downers Grove's city manager proposed that they MOVE fire station number one located on wisconsin ave. His proposal was to move that stations vehicles and manpower into Darien Woodridge's fire station number 2 located at 59th and belmont road.
AS OF YESTERDAY WHEN I SPOKE TO SEVERAL FRIENDS THAT WORK IN CITY HALL FOR THE VILLAGE OF DOWNERS GROVE.... DOWNERS GROVE HAS DECIDED NOT TO CONTINUE EXPLORING THE MOVING OF FIRE STATION ONE..... FOR THE FOLLOWING REASON...
THE BUSINESSES LOCATED IN THE INDUSTRIAL PARK AROUND STATION ONE WON'T ALLOW IT. I HAVE FRIENDS THAT OWN WAREHOUSES IN THAT AREA (ELLSWORTH INDUSTRIAL PARK)AND THEY TOLD ME THAT IF DOWNERS CLOSES THAT STATION, THEY WILL BE OUT OF BUSINESS. THEY FURTHER STATED THAT THE COST OF INSURING THEIR BUILDINGS WOULD INCREASE ONE THIRD FOR ONE BUILDING, AND FIFTY PERCENT FOR THE OTHER IF THE FIRE STATION MOVED AWAY. THE COST OF THE INSURANCE INCREASE, IF DOWNERS GROVE FIRE STATION ONE MOVED, WOULD BE TO MUCH FOR THEM TO CARRY.

As a foot note... I grow up in Downers Grove. I when to school in Downers Grove, and I lived in Downers Grove for the first 30 years of my life. I KNOW MANY PEOPLE IN THAT TOWN.

Also, as for the one fire station that they closed 20 years ago. They closed fire station 4 located in the base of the water tower on finley road just south of butterfield (across from fry's). That station was no longer needed due to a decreased call volume in that area after most of the bars and disco clubs closed in the 1980's. Station 4 was also to small and could not fit most fire vehicles. The water tower had one small door, a small round base and condensation off the water tank caused water damage and mold problems in the station below. It was just a bad design.

Here are links to a listing of all CURRENT AND OPEN FIRE STATIONS THAT I HAVE LISTED.....
Downers Grove
http://fdpubed.downers.us/fire/index.asp?page=stations
Darien Woodridge
http://www.dwfd.org/stations.htm

By mary nordmann on September 30, 2009 6:51 AM
Could someone please explain to me how there could be such a huge deficit? In the last 10 years the real estate tax on my block alone has more than quadrupled due to infill. Multiply that by the hundreds of other blocks this has happened to & the amount is staggering. The new McMansions are paying triple what we are, & believe me, they far outnumber the poor original homes. Where is all this newly generated tax money going? I agree with Sam, the taxes are killing us, & the quality of life has diminished. One more increase, & we'll be saying good-bye to the place we were born. Clearly it's time to cut the free-wheeling ways at City Hall now!!


========================================================================================================================================

Ms. Mary Nordmann,

I have been asking the same questions you are now asking for 3.5 years and no one in City Hall has any answers.

Our tax base has tripled. As you said your old home has had the taxes tripled and yet the McMansions pay triple that triple. In any other town, this would have resulted in a DECREASE of TAXES....or at least the TAX RATE.

Obviously we have FISCALLY IRRESPONSIBLE FOLKS running City Hall like a FIEFDOM. We have Establishment Folks who have hired their friends and relatives and refuse to let them go. Former Police Officers with no hands-on experience but PENSIONS being hired in places like City Hall and the Park District. I think they use to call that CRONYISM in Chicago.

The best example is the Building Inspectors. At one time we were building subdivision after subdivision and many simultaneously. New businesses were coming to build on the commercially zoned land.

Naperville went from being 20% developed to almost fully developled(98-99%) in a span of 2 decades. I was here 10 years before the boom so I witnessed it all with great admiration and never complained about anything to anyone.

During this boom we needed tons of BUILDING INSPECTORS. But the BOOM is over and we have yet, to the best of my knowledge, laid off one of the cazillions of building inspectors. I can not imagine what they do these days. Nit pick on homeowners or businesses to justify their salaries and future pensions? Don't really know! In corporate America, they don't let someone hang on for another 15 years to qualify for a pension if he or she is not needed. In Naperville, they do and this may be the answer as to why we have a 120 million accured liability pension deficit that is skyrocketing each year. And you can tack on another 12.7 million for City Hall as that only included Police and Fire Fighters.(These are estimates as the City refuses to release the true numbers...they are trying to hide them and it appears CM Bob has been ordered by the City Manager not to release any more information to this blog site. He was once a great source of knowledge. Sad to see him MUZZLED finally in Stepford's Wives Fashion.)

I found the Park District landscapers engaged in a soccer game and playing hookie from work while they actually supposedly have lots of work to do. Maybe they are getting their work done by noon. If that is the case lay half of them off so they can work full days for full pay. Does anyone know if these landscapers get a 75% pension after 30 years? It seems like everyone else is in NaperPerfectVille!

These Building Inspectors have 90% less work to do. They have some work because of some infills you point out, but even that dried up as homes are not selling. Why not terminate 90% of them and lay-off the remaining 10% until the infills start again if they ever start again since banks are not loaning.

We are basically paying them for NOTHING. What exactly are they doing? I have not caught them playing soccer yet.

Could they all be hiding out in the Hollywood Casino in Aurora gambling our money away? I don't know. But since the Pension Managers gambled $20.55 millon away with risky stock investments only God knows what could be happening in this town since our officials won't communicate to us.

I suggest Ms. Nordmann you take the podium this Tuesday, Oct 6, 2009 at 7pm and ask the City Council your awesome questions. I will be watching you on TV and cheering for you. Don't let them stop you at the 3 minute mark as they let their friends ramble on for 15 minutes. Exercise your Right to Free Speech without a ridiculous limitation of time.

You broke my heart when you said one more increase and you will have to leave the town you were born in. No one should have to leave the town they were born in because City Officials incinerate hundred dollar bills like they were fallen leaves.

Stand up to your City Officials. I would go with you, but I know I would carry the podium and throw it in anger. After 3.5 years of investigating them I am ready to IMPLODE just like their Pension System. I am much safer expressing myself here where Moderator Magee controls my outbursts and sometimes even my unintentional libel.

I hope many others join you. I would if I could. But beleive me, you don't want me there unless you want to see a Koren style council meeting. So I am staying home and watching TV. I don't want to be arrested. My jail cell may not have a computer and I need to continue exposing our fiscally irresponsible City Officials before they take us into Chapter 9.

I hope people comprehended your post. It was wonderful. Yes, new homes are paying 9 times the taxes of the old homes they replaced and City Officials don't know where the money is. This is not a new phenomenon. In the 90's they spent 10 million on the Napergate Trials and they can't account for that money either. They claim they forgot to keep records or lost the records or incinerated them. Who knows, but they don't exist and never existed. Can you imagine that, Ms. Nordmann???

Well, I guess if you are going to pay 22 year old boys and girls 60k as a STARTING salary plus a huge benefit package to be Police Officers and Fire Fighters that is where some of the money goes. No other college career makes this kind of money to START according to CNN/MONY. And to add insult to injury, while college graduates heading to private industry do not get a pension anymore, these PO and FF receive a 75% pension with 3% annual increases after only 30 years....provided for and guaranteed by the Naperville Taxpayer. Yes, they get to retire at age 52. If they marry young girls like Sgt. Drew Peterson did, we have to pay the pension to the spouse until she dies assuming she outlives him which may not be the case with DP's missing and possibly murdered wife. These pensions can easily last 60-80 years and have been estimated to cost many millions per each retired employee. That is where SOME of the money is going. For some of the rest see my 22 points in a prior blog above.

That is just a partial answer to your question. Ask the City Council on Tuesday for a full answer. Better still demand a full answer. And please don't throw the PODIUM at them when they tell you we will refer your concerns to City Staff and they will get back to you after you have left Naperville to retire because you could not afford to stay.

Let us take our town back from our Wasteful Spenders. Please speak up Naperville Natives as Mr. Nordmann so eloquently spoke up. May God Bless her and find a way to keep her in Naperville. She is what this town is about. Not our fiscally irresponsible City Staff, Officials and Council who are chasing the Natives away through their unrelentless tax increases year after year. Shame on them all for considering tax increases instead of trimming goverment waste and expenses. Sadly, these ARROGANTS think their salaries, benefits and pensions are off limits to any cuts. They think they are above us. They do not want to make any sacrifices. They want you the TAXPAYER to make all the SACRIFICES while they start HIGH ROLLING at age 52.

CIJ


CIJ. Thanks for your thoughts. I will see you at the next tea party.

Personal attacks on CIJ do not belong on this blog. Instead, focus on the issues.

I will restate what I think Annonymous is stating. "The City has been making cuts. They have limited ability to make more cuts."

Fair enough. I think CIJ outlined many issues, a third of which would solve the problem WITHOUT TAX INCREASES. I have not seen ONE of these items in a Doug Kreiger report or debated by the City Council.

Also, Kreiger's comments that the cuts have not been tough enough. TRUE!!!!! In my mind, this is because they are superficial. They could cut more. I said, get rid of the Developement Department. 90%. If development comes back, there are companies that outsource these services. Use them and charge the 125% of the cost back to the developers.

Instead, the City wants to keep these people and NOT CHARGE the developer. We do not need any additional development in Naperville. Make people pay to develop or let them try unincorporated plans without water, sewer or electric service.

I could go on. But the City had balanced budgets and kept tax increases to minimal amounts for 40 years. After Ron Miller left, fiscal disaster. One bad City Manager and now it looks like Junior (Kreiger) is not up to the job as well.

As to WOW. I think your point is that employees who would be laid off would suffer. OF COURSE. Just like the 10% of our fellow citizens who have been laid off. Just like the additional 10% that are "underemployed." And just like the 20% or more that have taken pay cuts.

Nobody in the City of Naperville has a job guaranteed for life. In fact, good employees should work their way out of a job. Jobs are cost and companies (and City's) should be working to reduce costs.

No technological advances in the last 50 years to reduce Fire and Police staffing? Who says? The Fire and Policemen. Where is Junior on that topic? Is he part of their secret society?

I have compassion for people who lose their jobs. My approach. It is a blessing. Go out and get a new job. In the long run, both the individual AND our economy will prosper.

But again, these two personal attacks should be censored. They do not add to the debate.

REPEAL HOME RULE,who is driving this bus? Stop the corruption by stopping the free flow of $$$$$.The crooks KNOW we cannot bring them to justice when COMBINE runs the town and county.Start by slating an honest person for states att'y.CAN WE DO THIS THING REPEAL HOME RULE,take back your village.It's your right,will you exercise them$$$$$$$$$ CIJ ,we'll bet your detractors are the SAME CITY BOYS as in the past.organize REPEAL HOME RULE and controll your pols!

KEEP it coming CIJ,you appear to be one person not afraid to speak up.We could use a couple like you @CONPA.On the subject of employees give backs,rockford will vote Thursday to invoke a 7% ACROSS all employees[union,non union,mgmnt,etc]reduction in pay to keep RPD and fire from ANY layoffs. Is this a first? Pls watch for the outcome of the vote> People wonder why the police lie and cheat,starting salaries of 60K??$$ excessive overtime pay and line employees making 120k and more?? You people maybe willing to put up with corruption and crooked cops,but way to often the crooks touch lives outside your 'village'.The police feel 'untouchable'with the combine in controll of N-ville.How many salaries does da mayor collect each month? anyone count that high$$$

the part that really annoys me about those in charge at city hall is that when times get tough they are always too slow and too late to respond. things always go from bad to worse before they do what needs to be done. if you carefully look to the history of their actions it is absolutely clear to me that these managers have far more loyalty to the city staff than they do to the citizens of naperville. somewhere these managers have either forgotten to whom they are accountable or their own arrogance has allowed them to loose sight of what should be their priorities. that or they might be afraid that if the cuts run too deep they might actually have to roll up their sleeves and do a little work themselves for a change.

what I don't understand is why the city manager and the city council allow this kind of culture and attitude of entitlement to perpetuate. government simply is way beyond the curve in learning to be more efficient, more responsible, more accountable. the days of waste and spend and tax are over. i'm not alone, and far from it, in saying that i am fed up. it is time for all levels of government to start demonstrating that they are sincere and committed to doing more with less or we simply must go about dismantling various departments and agencies if they resist. those departments and agencies that learn how to better manage their resources and operations in today's world should survive and those who insist on maintaining the status quo simply need to be put out to pasture.

two of the largest departments at city hall are the police and fire department. both of these departments operate under a hierarchy system of leadership and management that is for all practical purposes the same style that has been in effect in most police and fire departments in this country for 200 years. neither of these departments need to use such a management model nor does such a management model reflect the current education, knowledge, skills, and experience of their staff. these models serve only to provide opportunities for promotion and to continue the status quo. either department would be an excellent candidate for a management makeover that strips away all of the unneeded middle management layers that do absolutely nothing to improve customer service, efficiency, accountability, and more importantly to empower police officers to be more effective.

By annonymous on September 30, 2009 7:27 PM
CIJ .... you are giving yourself WAY too much credit! Cutting expenses from the budget for 2010 AND 2011 started last month, and was well under way before anything you wrote appeared on this blog.

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Really! I have been asking they cut the budget for 3.5 years on this blog site....way before the month you mention.

If what you say is true, why did they only discuss tax increases in Monday's workshop. Not one word was said about government cuts. Are you suggesting that the Naperville Sun Reporter was biased against the city in her coverage and did not tell us the whole truth? That she is not a balanced reporter or one who distorts reality?

And for 3.5 years I have been screaming about our pension fiasco on this blog site all of which is documented in the archives. I have been saying it will IMPLODE. Did City Officials listen? No, they did not. Did they act? No, they did not! Is it ready to IMPLODE. Yes, it is!

We have a possibly 120 million accrued acturial pension liability deficit. Last year I warned the city when it stood at $61.4 million. Did they listen? No! I was a ONE PERSON BULLDOZER asking residents to hop on. Don't recall anyone wanting to hop on at the time. I see things are changing and people are now ready to hop on my BULLDOZER that is heading towards City Hall for the demolition of CORRUPTION.

The state ordered the City of Naperville to reduce the pension immediately and have it eliminated by 2033. Did they listen? No! They increased the pension liability deficit by about $60 million in one year by screwing up with very risky stock investments at taxpayer expense. Yes, they lost the money and we have to reimburse the funds so City Employees can get 75% pensions at age 52 while we bust our rear ends to support them.

This is not about giving myself credit for anything. This is about holding are fiscally irresponsible City Officials responsible for the waste of hard earned taxpayer money.

I don't want credit. I want to wake the taxpayers up and have them go for the jugular of City Officials so they will listen. I feel like I am succeeding in waking some up. I hope to wake them all up soon with the help of the Naperville Sun. The Naperville Sun can take all the credit. They have the real power. I don't. I am no Napergate Man who can run a newspaper within a newspaper and get the job done.

If you think I am looking for credit, let it be so. But I am looking for a reduction of my taxes and a reduction of every citizens taxes in this town. I am looking for a reduction in government waste. That is my AGENDA...not CREDIT!

Let credit be due where it is due! This is not about credit.

Now, why don't you do your fair share in reducing taxes instead of worrying about who gets credit and who does not.

I am an Anonymous Nobody here. I can't possibly get credit for what I am saying or doing. I have no intention of ever revealing my identity. I use to change my handle every other day to be as anonymous as possible. Do I sound like a blogger who was looking for personal credit or recognition or to build a name for my moniker? I am here on a mission for a good cause. Period.

I was pretty much forced to choose a handle and stick with it. Now you are accusing me of doing this for credit....nonsense! Where do your shenanigans end? Hopefully, you are not a pension abuser.

Thank you!

CIJ

Thanks for creating a forum for CIJ to spew nonsense again. Chris, don't you feel bad sometimes for allowing this to go on?

CIJ treats this issue like it's not going to effect a lot of people's lives, have some respect. These are tough times for everyone, even city employees, believe it or not.

CIJ .... you are giving yourself WAY too much credit! Cutting expenses from the budget for 2010 AND 2011 started last month, and was well under way before anything you wrote appeared on this blog.

Excellent comments and out of the box thinking by all the bloggers so far.

Keep them coming as your City Officials and City Council Members are reading them.

Maybe if more residents continue expressing their feelings, even the Naperville Sun might wake up and decide to take on its responsibility of controlling an out of control government.

Imagine in the first work shop, it did not even occur to City Officials to reduce expenses, waste, wages or personnal.

Only after they read this blog site did it occur to them that we the residents will not tolerate increased taxes or fees in any form or manner.

I gave them 22 suggestions yesterday. Many of you have given excellent suggestions also.

I have not put our new City Manager under the microscope yet. I have been giving him a very long grace period.

I now declare his grace period IS over.

Effective immediately he will be investigated daily to see if he is cutting government waste.

If I hear him utter the words that we have to increase taxes, I will be calling for his immediate and unconditional resignation on this blog site and elsewhere.

I believe the Naperville Sun will join me in this call once they realize how out of control our City Officials have been with taxpayer money.

McMansion after McMansion has been built in this town generating huge tax revenues and our City Officials found a way to squander it all. Business after business has opened in our town generating huge tax revenues and our City Officials again found a way to squander it all.

How dare they think it is OK to practice Double Dipping and Triple Dipping on us hard working taxpayers. This practice must not be tolerated even if legal as it is CORRUPT. If the State is corrupt, do we as a City have to be corrupt. It must be abolished effective immediately.

Ask Assistant City Manager Robert Marshall to forgo his 90k pension or RESIGN immediately. This practice of Double Dipping while being gainfully employed and working on a SECOND PENSION is unconsionable.

Do you hear me City Manager Doug Krieger? Do something about it immediately. If an employee wants to continue working for the city, let him continue working. But to retire him from one department and put him in another department so he can collect a pension while working is UNIMAGINABLE. It is DESPICABLE. It is UNCONSIONABLE. Do you hear me, Mr. Krieger? Am I loud and clear? Please don't ever let it happen under you watch. Give the taxpayers some assurance you are bringing changes to Naperville and not continuing past corruption...be it legal or illegal. Enough is Enough!

You have seen what the policies of your predecessors have led to. Stop them immediately. Like I said earlier, you don't want me taking the podium this Tuesday. I would probably grab the podium and sling it across the floor like Indiana Coach Bobby Knight did with that chair to make my point since no one has been listening for years in Council Chambers. We talk to you guys and it goes in one ear and comes out the other. Why don't you listen to your constituents?

You hear what the bloggers are saying now to you, Mr Krieger. So please listen. You guys got us in this mess. Now get us out of this mess by making the necessary sacrifices. Don't dare ask us for the $14.1 million to plug YOUR DEFICIT that you created because of INCOMPETENCE and INEFFICIENCIES.

Further, you must understand the dire straits YOUR PENSION FUNDS are in. We are not going to tolerate a Napergate Style Cover Up. Just because the Napergate Man retired you can not return to your cover-up methods that he exposed for an entire decade in the 90's and early 2000's. We need to progress in this town...not regress to our old broken ways.

I am really surprised that you folks in City Hall would return to your old ways after the Napergate Man spent so much of his personal money exposing you to the taxpayers. They say a tiger can not change its stripes. I sure hope that is not true. You have been eating the taxpayers alive. Do you want to kill us now?

What is wrong with your folks that you would even think of a tax increase in this economic environment in which we spent 15 million dollars less at our local retailers. Most of us took paycuts and you want us to pay higher real estate taxes so that you all can Double Dip, give yourselves raises, and get pensions at age 52 while we are still busting our rear ends to make ends meet so you can thrive at our expense. Nonsense!

You folks in City Hall don't get it. You bring shame to Naperville.
I am extremely dissappointed in you all. I have been warning on this blog site for 3.5 years. No one was listening. I see many residents are finally listening and writing now that the IMPLOSION is taking place. I told you I would wake them up and I am waking them up. The Naperville Sun is helping with its recent articles showing you did not even consider cuts on Monday in your workshop. Only tax increases. Unbelievable!!!

I am not paid a single dollar and I knew an IMPLOSION was coming over 3 years ago. I annouced it here until I was blue in the face. You guys in City Hall are paid the big bucks and big pensions and you could not predict this IMPLOSION. Why! Are you all in DENIAL?

Do you all just want to put in your time, collect your pension and get out of here like the last City Manager before Mr. Marshall? Where are your proposals? Where are your solutions? Why do we pay you?

We are paying you handsomely to watch out for our best interest...not yours. If you can not represent the taxpayers, please submit your RESIGNATIONS immediately and unconditionally.

This has gone too far. The gloves are finally off. If you want to fight us, we are ready to fight you.

No more taxes. No more increases. Our houses went down in value and we expect a reduction in taxes. Don't dare tamper with the tax rate and increase our taxes. We know your little tricks. We are sick and tired of them. We are not naive, stupid or ignorant so don't dare treat us in those manners. Respect us and we will respect you folks. Stop wasting money and we will not call for your RESIGNATIONS. If you don't resign we wil RECALL you in a referendum.

If you can not control Government Waste, we will strip HOME RULE away from you so you will be LIMITED to 5% waste instead of unlimited waste as is the case right now. Shocking if you ask me!

No wonder you had snipers sitting on City Hall when we had our peaceful TAX PROTEST on April 15. Apparently, you understand we have reached the point of RAGE against your INCOMPETENCE in running our beloved City of Naperville that you are destroying and trashing.

Start off by listening to Anonymous who called for a 10% reduction in everywhere and everything and everybody. Let us see if that eliminates this $14.1 million budget deficit. If it does not, let us try 15%. Whatever it takes. But don't you folks dare ask us for another penny in taxes in this almost near depression economy let alone recession.

big government is simply the end result of little bureaucrats slowly growing their kingdoms over time until the little bureaucrats end up with more and more power.

while corporations have spent the better part of the last two decades learning how to control, lower, and eliminate expenses of all kinds we have all stood by all too apathetically and just watched government continue to tax and spend and generally operate inefficiently.

it is long past time to start implementing budget control mechanisms that are proven to work in the private sector. the biggest problem is that none of the bureaucrats really want to give an inch because then they fear they will loose some of their power. as a result all they do is give us token lip service and then they head out the door and continue to operate "business as usual".

the only way to tackle this problem is to simply demand a 10% across the board reduction from everyone. no one escapes the knife. 10% of all staff in all departments gets laid off. 10% of all expense items in all departments is gone. no sacred cows. even the mayor and the rest of the city council need to step up to the plate and take at least a 10% pay cut. Every managerial job should also take a 10% pay cut.

every manager must have a performance contract that evaluates their job performance in terms of managing people and money. those who reduce costs and lower staff while maintaining department service levels should be rewarded accordingly and those who do not should either not be rewarded or should be let go. we need to take the accountability of city managers up at least several notches.

this is not "business as usual". these are drastic times and everyone at city hall needs to demonstrate that they are doing their fair share to get government spending under control, to demonstrate their empathy with the community and what is happening to everyone in today's economy.

I am impressed by the informed discussions presented by most of you. Tax increases are INSANE. If you want socialism, however, you are going to have to expect constant and substantial tax increases. City government is FAT but it's just the tip of the ice berg. I urge the council to cut expenses and forgo any future tax increases. Please understand that the sales tax will not work as well as you think. It's too easy to shop elsewhere. I would persoanlly prefere the sales tax to a property tax increase but I know that it's only delaying the inevitable. Cut the spending instead.

Just as an FYI. They did last year and they will do it again probably, the city did ask people to take unpaid time off. And as far as the FD goes, they already take one day off without pay every 9 shifts so they do not incure overtime thus stressing the city budget anymore. It's in their union contract.

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City Manager Doug Krieger has said the public has not noticed the city's layoffs and other belt-tightening measures in previous years, and it's time for noticeable cuts.(Naperville Sun)


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This is a very interesting and true statement that was delivered last night after the City Manager probably read my 22 points about reducing government waste before increasing taxes to the very hard pressed Naperville Residents.

How ironic that after my 1:53pm blog yesterday, they changed their focus from increasing taxes to government cut backs. A 180 degree turn or possibly a bluff to pretend that they are looking at government waste finally. Yes, our officials do read Magee's Blog Site. We can express our grievances here if we don't want to take the podium for 3 minutes the first and third Tuesdays of each month. I encourage both. City Council meetings have almost been deserted lately. Probably because the City Council stopped listening many years ago after the Napergate Man stopped bringing large crowds due to his apparent retirement from the ugly political scene.

Yes, the city did lay-off/eliminate 46-47 employees/positions last year and we the residents felt nothing as City Manager Doug Krieger so correctly, honestly and bluntly stated. There was a reason for that. And that is they were EXCESS FAT hanging on to the City Pay-Roll and Pension-Roll for no good reason...for NOTHING!

And he is right. It is time for noticeable cuts. It is time for true belt-tightening measures where both the residents and city employees feel them. Pain may finally be necessary to stop the annual hemorrhaging of our financial well being.....of our beloved Naperville.


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I know the Park District is a separate entity from the City of Naperville but we residents are taxed for their services on our real estate tax bills.

Yes, 20 Park District Landscapers engaged in a soccer game about 10 days ago behind Centennial Beach in a remote park. The game started at 12pm and ended at 1pm. I came back and forth and watched the game at intervals. I did not want to report this incident immediately for fear I would be identified due to freshness of memory.

Let us assume this game of soccer was on a one hour lunch break. If these employees were working hard in a rough job like landscaping would they truly have the energy to play soccer, a grueling sport for one full hour. The last game I played 2 summers ago, I tore both of my calf muscles. Of course I am a little older than most of those landscapers.

But most landscapers I know who work for private entities need their lunch break to rest and rejuvenate as their work is exhausting. Did Supervisors permit these employees to have their lunch break at a different hour so that no one can complain about this well hiddden soccer game? Did they let them rest at a different hour? Everything really looked so suspicious to me especially due to the choice of a VERY inconspicous field without goal posts when many others were available at that hour. The field was at the end of that long drive off of Centennial Beach Parking that leads to the woods.

Yes, there were 7 Park District vehicles that were parked near the field. No other vehicles. Are Park District Employees allowed to drive their vehicles to soccer games on taxpayer time using taxpayer gas? (I guess a former Naperville Cop who "MAY" be Double Dipping is now running the Park District.)

I would like to see the new Park District Boss launch a thorough investigation regarding this incident and report back to us. If the work is so easy at the Park District let us lay off half the landscapers there and make the other half work to their potential instead of HALF their potential.

Are these landscapers inhuman? Can they truly work 4 hours, engage in a one hour soccer game, and go back and work 4 more hours without rest or lunch? They were not white collar landscapers who did the books. They were the blue collar landscapers whom actually do grueling physical work in hot weather. I believe the temperature that day was in the high 80s or low 90s.


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We have to get to the bottom of our real estate tax bills. If we don't, the City of Naperville and the Park District will run us all out of town. I noticed residents are now stating on this blog site, they can no longer retire in the town they were born in. How shameful of our city officials to do this to the natives of this lovely town who established it while no one cared. No respect for the elders of this town...disgusting if you ask me. Yes, our fiscally irresponsible City Officials are Double Dipping while our retirees are trying to find a place to move that is affordable. It makes me very sick....very sick. Do you hear me, Mr. Doug Krieger or would you like me to come SCREAM next Tuesday at the City Council Meeting? Believe me I am better off here where Mr. Magee can control me and my outbursts.

We are fortunate to have so many McMansions worth multi-million dollars in this town. That is the only reason our bubble has not burst yet. McMansions worth 2 or 3 million dollars provide huge taxes and do not need any where near the services that they pay for based on a pro rata share of contribution. They are subsidizing the rest of us and our City Officials. And yet, we are told we have a $14.1 million operating budget deficit and possibly a $120 million actuarial accrued liability pension deficit despite our over 2000-3000 McMansions worth multi-million dollars and being taxed at roughly 2% of assessed valuation. I am not even counting homes worth only one million, which are in the thousands in NaperPerfectVille.

If this town had all $200,000-300,000 homes as is typical in most suburbs, I guarantee you we would be in Chapter 9 due to the fiscally irresponsible behavior of our City Officials. (I am using these choice words recommended by another blogger instead of my drunken sailor words to see if we can make some headway here with our City Officials.)

I am speaking up and I think our City Officials are beginning to listen. They know I am telling the truth. Just imagine if you would all speak up loudly and clearly with me. Just imagine if the Naperville Sun would show some courage and speak up loudly and clearly on behalf of the residents. Just imagine if the Naperville Sun would give some tough love to our City Officials! Just imagine if the Naperville Sun would have some front page headlines that would wake up the sleepy residents of this pretty town known as NaperPerfectVille where a homeless guy is considered a THORN out of place whom must be dealt with and destroyed some how some way! How shameful that our City Officials are picking on a HOMELESS MAN instead of the massive operating and pension deficits that are about to take us into Chapter 9 bankruptcy.

It is possible to wake the residents in this sleepy town up before they lose their town. The Napergate Man used headlines in the Naperville Sun in paid ads titled NAPERGATE to wake up this sleepy town. It is a fact through the use of the Naperville Sun and his fiery style, he woke up residents. It is a fact that he could fill City Hall on any Tuesday he wanted and in fact filled city hall many times especially if his nemisis Mr. Bill Brestal was going to be there seeking "favors" known as "variances" such as in Spring Green where he attempted to put a GAS STATION in a quiet Naperville Subdivision. Imagine that insanity!

The Napergate Man made a difference and cleaned the corruption in City Hall in the 90's. Maybe reduced is a better word. It is hard to imagine anyone having the capability of cleaning the entire mess at City Hall.

We now have to follow in his footsteps and continue in his legacy. We know how he did it and we must do the same. Our City Officials need to be PRESSURED. They don't listen to ordinary folks. They need to be SCREAMED at. They don't listen to normal tones of voice. They need the Naperville Sun to "call them out" to their 17,000 subscribers and 50,000 readers. They need to be humiliated in public in order to take actions that favor the residents instead of themselves.

They are only worried about their Paychecks and BIG FAT PENSIONS as I have been saying for 3.5 years on this blog site. Their Pension Funds are broken at the seams and ready to IMPLODE. What are they doing to fix them? Nothing! The City of Naperville snuck an additional $1.8 million of taxpayer funds in these Police and Fire Pension Funds in the form of contributions to try to get them off Life Support.

The City wants to blame this entire PENSION MESS bording on a FIASCO or TSUNAMI strictly on the State. The STATE did not order the CITY to start 22 year old Police Officers and Fire Fighters at $60k a year. The State allows you to pay PO and FF whatever you can afford and feel is appropriate, fair and reasonable.

You can easily recruit highly qualified POs and FFs for 45k. Many suburbs pay less and so was Dupage County. A 25% reduction in pay means a 25% reduction in Pension Benefits that is strictly under City Jurisdicational Authority and not State Control.

Don't let City Officials deceive you and tell you it is all out of their control. What baloney? City Officials can do their part for now which is REDUCE wages that will REDUCE pension pay-outs. A Pay Cut is a DOUBLE ATTACK that both helps balance the Operating Budget and Pension Deficit. City Officials need to stop fearing the Unions. Break the backs of the union if necessary by laying half the police and fire fighters as Toldeo did if we have to go there as a last resort. Recently 1000 Whirlpool union employees would not budge from their 34 dollar an hour pay. Whirlpool fired them all and replaced them with 2 dollar an hour help in Mexico. We are not asking our POs and FFs to work for free. We are asking them for a 25% cut in wages that will also reduce the pension pay-outs and bring some solvency to our city. If they say, NO, lay half of them off. I promise you we will survive as Toledo has survived. At some point sanity has to prevail. Allowing Assistant City Manager Robert Marshall, a former cop, to Triple Dip into our tax funds while he is participating in balancing the budget in UNCONSIONABLE.

Next time somone wants to retire early while he is runing marathons and very physically fit, in order to change positions for the purpose of Double Dipping, the City of Naperville could inform him or her, we can only hire you if you delay your PENSION till you truly retire at age 65. And he or she must be required to forgo a second pension. Is 90k for an annual pension after 30 years with 3% annual increases NOT enough for a City Employee?

We civilians are lucky to get 12k from the Social Security Administration when we retire despite paying a 7.65% contribution out of each paycheck. No wonder we are broke. No fiscal responsibility at all from those who are trying to balance the operating budget. It is like asking a fox to watch the hens. He will eat them up alive just like Mr. Marshall is eating us up alive....and may I add very LEGALLY due to a very CORRUPT PENSION SYSTEM.

The City Council can pass a RESOLUTION condemning the STATE LEGISLATURES for demanding we pay 75% Pension Pay-Outs after 30 short years while Fire Fighters only pay in 9.45% and Police Officers only pay in 9.91% in personal contributions. The numbers simply do not add up and the burden falls on the taxpayer in an unimaginable and burdensome way. That is why we have a $120 actuarial accrured pension liability deficit.

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(This is my personal rough estimate until the City coughs up the REAL NUMBER which should have been provided to the taxpayers by now but is being hidden in Napergate Style and Fashion. Without adjustments for contributions, interest and dividends my rough estimate stands at $131.4 million)


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It is so easy for me to go on and on. I could probably write a book about the inefficiencies and incompetence at City Hall in one day. However, I will spoon feed you one Chapter at a time in hopes of waking you all up in order to help me stop the shenanigans practiced by City Hall before they get out of control and IMPLODE.

Keep in mind no City Official or Legislature receiving a BIG FAT PENSION is going to call for a reduction or end to such INSANITY. Only if we taxpayers speak in UNISON and PROTEST will we accomplish anything. We have our work cut out for us. Let us get to work right away!

PLEASE HELP US NAPERVILLE SUN! WE NEED YOUR HELP!

Thank you!

CIJ


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Moderator Magee,
While I am not certain bloggers like to read long letters, I am certain City Officials and Council Members are reading my letters. As a matter of fact, they are inserting them under the MICROSCOPE, according to one Council Member, which is fine with ME. Your article in the Naperville Sun today verified what I was told. Notice the difference between what they did in the workshop on Monday compared to Tuesday. Hopefully, they smelled the coffee.

I feel the Naperville Sun can make 100 times the difference I am making. Our City Ofificals and City Council Members really need some TOUGH LOVE to help them see the light. They are unable to see the light as they mostly think in the box, just like Police Chief David Dial.

I was very disappointed to read the Sun article about the possible tax increase. Not to doubt the author of the article, but was there truly no discussion of cutting expenditures before taxes were raised?

Times are hard and everyone is leaning to make do with less and that means the city needs to do so, too.

Has the city looked into which services could be cut? How about curbside leaf pick-up? It’s not unheard of for other cities to require their residents to bag their leaves and pay for yard waste stickers. How about employee furlough days like Chicago has been doing? How about deferring maintenance (streets, etc) and purchases (cars, etc) where possible? Notice, however, that I do not call for cuts in the public safety sector…that should be a last resort only.

While cutting expenditures may not make up the entire budget shortfall, I think that steps to reduce spending should be done before any tax increase is even considered. Where’s fiscally conservative Furstenau when we need him? Oh, he already wasted $1 million of our money….

T.B.

P.S. And don’t expect a drop in the SECA (Culture) tax if there is a Naperville sales tax…they can’t do it now that they’ve devoted so much future SECA money to the “free” ugly bell tower.

Could someone please explain to me how there could be such a huge deficit? In the last 10 years the real estate tax on my block alone has more than quadrupled due to infill. Multiply that by the hundreds of other blocks this has happened to & the amount is staggering. We still live in an old, modest home, & our taxes have tripled thanks to the teardown phenomenon. The new McMansions are paying triple what we are, & believe me, they far outnumber the poor original homes. Also, in the last 10 years the downtown has spread dramatically, with stores, offices, condos, etc. Where is all this newly generated tax money going? I agree with Sam, the taxes are killing us, & the quality of life has diminished. Try living with 10 solid yrs. of non-stop construction all around you, its not pleasant. We are already retired, & it's impossible to live on a pension in this town. One more increase, & we'll be saying good-bye to the place we were born. Clearly it's time to cut the free-wheeling ways at City Hall now!!

I guess I'm missing something in this report. The City has a $14 million shortfall -- ostensibly primarily due to road repairs, hence the logic of a gasoline tax, but they want a 25% increase in property taxes. Really? 25%? I understand that transfer tax collections are down and sales tax revenues are likely down compared to prior years. But, households are facing similar problems -- anyone out there expecting a 25% increase in their paycheck next year? How about a 25% gain in their 401K? Anyone?

Business and households are dealing with tough times,too, and responsible management dictates that spending get cut to match the decline in revenues. Borrowing is not an answer, but neither is a 25% tax hike.

We've been here 20 plus years, our taxes increase every year. The quality of life, while still good, has diminished considerably over the same time frame. There is no doubt that retirement in Naperville is simply not possible -- the tax burden is too high already and cleary going up.

Lastly, don't insult me by suggesting that implementing a sales tax and reducing the cultural tax is a wash. They want an extra $14 million in tax revenue -- anyway you slice it, it's a tax increase of $14 million.

It's almost impossible to believe that any government could have the audacity to even suggest a tax increase of this magnitude. If you live in district 204, I think you should be prepared for a double whammy -- a new referendum for higher school taxes is gathering momentum. (They promised an operating referendum after the new high school was built.)

It is OK to laugh but please understand despite the inserted humor I am serious about what I said. No one who is foreclosing or filing for bankruptcy is laughing. We seriously can not allow our fiscally irresponsible City Council and City Staff continue in their ill ways.

I provided 22 areas where our City Officials can reduce taxes. I urge other bloggers to point out a few areas of waste they have observed. Let us get the message across to them since they do read this BLOG SITE.

Increased taxation is no longer acceptable from the Atlantic Coast to the Pacific Coast....from the Canadian border to the Mexican border. Why should it be acceptable in NaperPerfectVille!?!?


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Moderator Magee,

You seem like an observing kind of an individual. Could you point out some ways the City of Naperville can cut costs and save money so we can avoid higher taxes? Maybe the Sun could have a contest for children to write an essay as to how City Officials can pare government waste instead of raising taxes.

Let us give the winner a cash award. I would be happy to provide the winner with the cash award. Maybe if they see our children have good ideas, they will get out of their ruts and begin thinking out of the taxation box. Right now they all have their heads buried in the sands.

CIJ

CJI you are hallarious, keep up the laughs...

who among us has the answer to all of the suggestions above? We pay the city council to guide us through good ties and bad. Maybe they should hold a no time limit televised meeting open to the general public to take these suggestions into mind and candidly come up with answers. Let them hear our concerns, not limited to three minutes, and let us hear their replies to those suggestions or concerns. None of this.... we`ll have staff look into the matter. Demand their answers as if it were an election year.

Dear City Council Members,

After reading the article in the Naperville Sun, I finally realize you believe there is only one option for closing budget deficits. Increase taxes, here and there and everywhere. Do you not feel we taxpayers are taxed enough? Do you think we spent 15 million dollars less at Naperville Retailers because we have more money? We actually have less money because many of our employers cut our wages and benefit packages. Because we are making 1.5% interest on our savings instead of 5% interest. Because are 401ks have been decimated into 201ks!

Walgreens, is for example cutting 1000 employees just at the Corporate Office, and they will find a way to get the job done one way or another. Its stock was up at one point today over 4 dollars per share or nearly 12.4%. This is what shareholders want and most likely what taxpayers want. Cuts in excess fat...reductions in wages of overly paid city employees.....termination of unncessary positions.

It is time you smell the coffee my dear council members. It is time to make cuts in wages and bodies.


Here are some suggestions to balance the budget.


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1. Reduce starting salaries of police officers and fire fighters from 60k to 45k. Not only will you save on salaries but on pension costs that are based on a percentage of salary. As you know you are experiencing pension fund liability deficits in excess of 120 million after your portfolio managers lost 20.55 million of hard earned taxpayer money.

2. Reduce all wages of all employees of the City of Naperville by 10% across the board with no exceptions including yourselves.

3. Make City Employees pay for a larger part of their health benefits as has happened in corporate America.

4. Force city employees to take certain days a month off without pay also known as FURLOUGH! Force them to get the work done in less time as many cities including Chicago and Los Angeles have done. The deafening chatter in the cubicles will stop when they are under pressure to produce.

5. Lay off all employees who constitute excess fat. Lay off the building inspectors as Blogger Enough suggested since the town is 98% built up. See if the Village of Plainfied will take them when the boom resumes as they are only 25% built up with tons of vacant land. They obviously are good, did their jobs, but we can no longer afford them since we do not need them. By holding on to them we are not only paying them needlessly but building their pensions for them at a time when our Pension Funds have exceeded 130 million in actuarial accrued liability deficits. How the h@ll are we going to eliminate our pension deficit by 2033 as the state ordered if we keep making it worse? And this year did we make it worse or what?

6. Hold onto City Vehicles longer...until they die. It is cheaper than replacing them at 53,000 miles so a city employee can have a shiny paint job. Vehicles are made to last 250 miles these days. So use them and exploit them instead of exploiting us taxpayers at every turn.

7. Turn up the A/C Controls and turn down the Heating Controls in City Buildings as we do in our homes to save money. Does the concept of saving money exist at City Hall? The lights are on everywhere at night when only one lonely SECURITY GUARD is there. Is that waste of electricity necessary? And we taxpayers are paying for your damn waste with our inflated electric bills. Buy the security guard a nice rechargeable flashlight if you want him to do rounds in the empty buidling all night instead of keeping all the lights on.

8. Ask all City Employees who are Double Dipping to forgo their pension until they truly retire starting with Poster Boy Marshall who is making about 170k in salary while collecting possibly 90k due to his automatic 3% pension increases.....while working on a second pension from our taxpayer funds that do not exsist anymore....spent by the drunken sailors before they can even be received.

Cut these annual pension increases out immediately for retirees who are receiving 7-10 thousand dollars in monthly pension benefits and untold other benefits.

9. Let us cut out the 3 million in Police OT. We need to stop paying for 14 police officers to sit in jury boxes as potted plants collecting OT when 99.5% of the traffic violaters plead guilty and just want to get out of the courtroom and go back to work. Residents are not asking for jury or bench trials over 75 dollar speeding tickets so what are all these cops doing there but milking the taxpayer for OT. Chief David Dial refuses to investigate this serious "charge" I am making and is worried about Homeland Security while he is on our payroll and not theirs.

10. The bike cops or school resource officers need to substitute for patrol officers who are accumulating OT. Riding their bikes needlessly on summer weekdays when the downtown is deserted after 10pm is a waste of taxpayer money. The downtown is packed during September weekends and we have 2-4 cops downtown. Why do we need 12-17 cops collecting OT in the summer on WEEKDAYS! We are acting like KOREA or IRAN showing off our soldiers to the visitors from out of town. Stop this nonsense. We are not a third world country who has image problems so why act like one!

11. Impose a $5 dollar parking fee for vehicles who use our garages on weekends. Drunks are coming all the way from Chicago to party in Naperville. When I asked them what brings them here they said they don't like paying the 30 dollar parking fee in Chicago and 20 dollar cover charge to go to bars down there. So let us get 5 or 10 bucks out of them since they are use to paying 30 bucks to park and do not subsidize our garages. Residents with IDs should be able to park for free since we are taxed already on our REAL ESTATE TAX BILLS for these garages. Day time parking can remain free as it appears to be used mostly by residents and local business.

12. The Downtown Food and Beverage Tax is fair and should not be eliminated since the downtown businesses use a disproportionate amount of city services from parking garages, extra police and even have their sidewalks swept and snow plowed for them. Give me a break here. Let us not repeal this tax and charge everyone else who is not benefitting instead. Repealing a tax when you are 14.1 million in the hole only causes you to create a tax somewhere else that is probably more UNFAIR. After we develop a positive budget, I have no problem repealing this tax and many other taxes....but not when we are this much in the HOLE.

13. And what about the 2.5 million in OT for the fire fighters that I thought I read somewhere. With sprinkler systems, alarm systems,smoke detectors and less flamable building materials we should be reducing our fire stations instead of increasing them as many cities are doing. Downers Grove just shut one down and consolidated 2 others into one.

14. It is just insanity to have 200 fire fighters because one house burns down every other month or third month. We taxpayers have home insurance and if our homes burn down we get a brand new home. Don't worry about our kids since we have smoke detectors and they are out of the house way before you guys make it in almost every case. Right now foreclose has a 100 greater chance of happening than a fire. So please understand and don't yell FIRE on this blog site as you always do. We are not fools. We know what is going on. How nice that you have so much free time that you can shine and wax your engines, play cards or basketball, watch TV and shop for and cook gourmet meals while on the Taxpayer Clock.

15. No need to play the fear game on us anymore, my dear Firefighters. We only need 100 fire fighters in this town. Lay off 100 and that will save us a little under 10,000,000 including benefits plus probably another 10,000,000 in pension benefits for the future.

16. Many towns across the country are back to volunteer fire fighters. The job is not difficult since due to smoke detectors we are usually only saving a building structure that can be replaced with insurance proceeds. Why should we spend 20 million on 100 extra fire fighters to save a few hundred thousand in lost property. We still have another 100 fire fighters who will come maybe a minute or two later and sometimes in the same time depending on the location of the fire.

17. Strip all city employees who drive city cars of their vehicles when they abuse them by driving them home or on personal errands.

18. Check on the Park District LANDSCAPERS who were playing soccer on taxpayer time in the park behind Centennial Beach in a very remote location last week. Just happened to catch about 20 of them playing hookie from work while investigating parking needs and this future Library Deck as is my duty as a pro bono investigative journalist for this Sun Blog Site. About 7 clearly labeled Park District Vehicles brought them to play soccer in this well hidden location on a non-soccer field with make shift goal posts. If they were not hiding something they could have went to a real soccer field in a conspicuous location of which Naperville has many available in the day time.

19. Cancel the $20 million library deck permanently. Plenty of parking at Centennial Beach that extends to where the Park District Employees play soccer at taxpayer expense instead of mow the grass in the parks. Maybe they are jealous of the police and fire figthers and want to play this OT game. Play during regular hours and work during OT hours. Milk the "rich" taxpayer of Naperville. They got "plenty" of money.

20. Since no one in our City thought of cutting expenses as a way of closing this $14.1 million operating budget deficit, fire all the City Staff and do not re-elect your Council Members unless they speak up immediately against higher taxation. Let us hire new staff who do not believe in eliminating deficits by higher taxation. This is like giving a spoiled child a new credit card every time he maxes out his old one instead of asking him to control himself.

21. And shut down the legal department and save 1.4 million dollars as they farm out so much of their work to outside legal firms who milk us as if we are cows. If they can not handle Civil Right Cases we don't need them. And they are about to ignite Huber v. Naperville like money grows on trees.

22. And how about imploding the Carillon since it is nothing but a costly eyesore that we are subsidizing endlessly.

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I can easily think of another 101 other ways of cutting government waste resulting in lower taxes. I will stop writing more points now only not to bore you. But I hope you get the point that our City Officials can not think OUT of the BOX. They are all stuck in their old ways of thinking....their brains are diluted with mud.

Anyone who thinks higher taxation is the solution to everything needs to resign. It shows they are BRAINLESS. Even a child could balance the budget by just increasing taxes every time there is a shortfall. that takes no talent. But reducing costs does take some talent and logic.

Executives making 6 figure salaries and accumulating 6 digit pensions after 30 years should give us more....we deserve more....we deserve cost cuts and solutions instead of HIGHER and HIGHER ENDLESS TAXATION.

I am really ashamed of our City Officials and City Council Members that they would dare think of rasing taxes in this disastrous economic environment.

It is time the Naperville Sun joined its readers and bloggers by condemning our City Officials for their incompetence and inefficiencies that I have been detailing on this blog site for 3.5 years and have now resulted in a projected $14.1 million operating budget deficit. If the Naperville Sun does not take a stand now, next year we will have a $28.2 million budget deficit. These people in power are clueless. They are DRUNK!

If your revenues are down, you cut costs....you don't increase TAXES. If no one is building, you lay off the building inspectors. You don't pay them to smoke cigars and drink wine on 3 hour long lunch breaks.

If you want RED LIGHT PHOTO to give tickets instead of police, you lay off some police. You don't increse police. At least these RED LIGHT PHOTOS are not demanding 75% pensions after 30 years of ticketing. Plus they have been ticketing police and city officials finally. Thank God the Almighty! I love Fairness and Equality!

If you want to impose sprinkler systems in every business in town, you need to lay off some fire fighters since the sprinkler systems will put the fire out before the NFD gets there. Who cares if it takes a minute or more before they get there since the fire will already be out. Is not that what home insurance is for? That is why we buy it....for the very very rare event.

Anyway, I am really angry at City Officials and City Council Members. I better stop writing before I start cussing on them and using the W word that I am prohibited from using. I can not help it that word comes to mind.

Yes, I am outraged and every citizen in this town who hears about higher taxes and more taxes should be outraged.

Our homes are going down in price. They will be appraised at less by the assessors office soon. We expect our taxes to be lower based on a 2% tax rate. Please don't dare increase the tax rate on us. Again, find ways to cut your waste and eliminate your improprieties which can be found anywhere and everywhere.

You don't want me to take the podium at the next City Council Meeting. Because I will not stop exposing government waste on your televised cable system. You will have to call the NPD to remove me. If you think Mr. Huber is a protestor, you have not seen a real protestor until you have seen me. I am about to boil over due to your craziness of wanting to increase taxes. And BTW, leave Mr. Huber alone and stop using him as smoke screen and scape goat to your incompetence.

Look at your greater than 120 million pension liability deficit and 14.1 million budget deficit instead of Mr. Huber who is harmless, hopeless, homeless and helpless. Have some mercy on this man and leave him alone. He is not the root cause of our problems in downtown and elsewhere. You council members are the root cause of all our problems for not giving proper guidance to City Staff and Officials. WE need to evict you out of City Hall as soon as possibe. Good Riddens! If you want higher and more taxes, we want some new faces to look at. Do us a favor and resign as they do in Japan when they screw up. You guys screwed up royally and are still screwing up.

Please ask for their unconditional and immediate resignations, Naperville Sun!


CIJ

Lets see:

If China stops lending the Feds money.....

*The Feds either cut spending, or print their way into hyperinflation and collapse the country. The dollar is already in full collapse.

*The State of Illinois either cuts spending, since their federal transfusion ends, or they can print worthless Illinois money and see if anyone is dumb enough to accept it.

*Dupage County loses all State and Federal funding and has to cut spending or maybe we can print worthless Dupage money.

*Naperville has to cut spending because the Chinese loans and Federal Weimar Marks stop flowing through the Feds, State and County Governments.

Naperville's school districts have to cut spending since their percentage of the Chinese money and Weimar Marks stop coming. They should be using their “stimulus money” to teach the kids about collapsed overspending governments like Rome, Weimar Germany and Argentina, instead of spending it on pay raises for the administration and teachers, since this is the current course for our country. History repeats when the lessons go unlearned.

We have ineffective, frequently spineless and corrupt governments at many levels. Until they can cut entire departments or agencies, negotiate real worlds contracts, and stand up to their campaign contributing unions, we are all in trouble.

Naperville should take the strikes if our unions can't understand the financial condition of the city, state, Feds and the homeowners. Considering the 10% unemployment and 17% total unemployed plus underemployment rate, I am certain there are plenty of qualified people that would be happy to teach at our schools, or work for the city.

The heart of our country, the taxpayers have already been sucked dry with government spending and debt, our children and grandchildren have already been enslaved to foreign debt holders.

Stop the insanity!

Do you think a sales tax is called for, or is there a better option?

There are always better options than raising taxes. I agree with Enough. Well maybe not on those internet sex entrapments. I don't enough about them but it doesn't sound like a bad thing on the surface.

Look at schools, government waste, etc. before you raise one single tax. Then maybe we can have the federal government come in for lessons.

And Peat, I really hope you are joking.

I guess all the uproar over the year from tea parties to protests to the latest on health care and taxing those who don't have health insurance isn't enough. To the city of Naperville, we are fed up with Federal, State, County, School and City tax increases. Nothing more needs to be said except all government agencies must reduce spending.

No more taxes !! The city should cut back like everyone else. People are being taxed to death. The real estate taxes are terrible due to run away school boards and now the city ?

Also, it is a good idea to cut the building inspectors and the layers of management as well. Cutting back on the Keystone cops is another good idea. With the red light cameras, why to we need all the cops. Lay them off too!

Also, should repeal Home Rule and let the people take back the power of the drunken sailors on the city council who don't have a clue as to what is really going on.

Have a nice day!

there should also be a small percentage sales tax that goes to specially augment pensions for our brave firefighters and police. Nothing too much, but a little extra to help them out!

Yes, let us repeal HOME RULE and control those drunken sailors in City Hall.

Instead of increasing taxes, why don't we find ways to cuts costs.

How about getting rid of those POTTED PLANTS in the Jury Boxes?
How about getting rid of those BIKE COPS?

That would help wipe out the 3 million in police OT.

And I hear the Fire Dept. also has 3 million in OT.

Time to shut some fire stations down instead of expanding.

With Naperville 98% built out and in a no housing growth, why not lay off 90% of the building inspectors and all the layers of management.

The Keystone Cops should be the next target. I am really glad they are seeking out such violent crime such as teenage drinking parties and internet sex entrapments. Cut 20% of these jokers.

Why do we need 10 fire stations. Downers Grove closed one and is consolidating another. More waste.

The list keeps going on.

File a petition for Repealing Home Rule. Put it on the February election. No more taxes. NONE!!!!!!!!!!!!

It is about time the City started to increase taxes. But it is not enough.

Drivers of cars worth more that 30,000 should pay 100% tax so that people less than that value would get free gas. People with houses worth more than $300,000 should have double property taxes so those with lower values pay nothing.

Let's expand tax and spend. These lousy pennies do not amount to REAL SOCIALISM.

Well Orland Park is:

Village overall sales tax rate: In Cook County, 9.75% on general merchandise of which 1.75% of this rate is a Village revenue source

Naperville can start heading in that direction if they want but we'll do the same thing shopping and that is go to other cities with lower sales tax first. When it comes to popular stores like Penneys, Sears, Office Max, Staples etc you can find those elsewhere. Just have to plan a bit but no biggie. Now Naperville does have some uniques stores so it may still not hurt, but hey I think Oak Brook is at 7.5 so I can easily do all my shopping there. They have ColdWater Creek & others you have so...and you know once a person gets somewhere it is just so easy to just do all your shopping there & be done with it so...

So do you gain anything if you make 'the regulars' pay more & lose those who may come to Naperville to shop. Think wisely!

In this economy, road work should be cheaper. Offer them 66% for the job or no job.

Naperville should raise taxes on all previous businesses who were getting subsidized by the taxpayers. It's time they paid their fair share.

THEN re-figure out the gap and we'll go from there.

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