It’s a plan supported by the Governor, the City and now the Township as the Board of Trustees voted 4-1 to endorse consideration of shared services of the township’s highway department- a move that would save roughly $800,000 a year.
Under the plan, the frequency of some services would increase, like mowing of the parkways, which would shift from about five mows annually with the Township to around 20 mows with the city. Other services, however, like brush collection would decrease from six pickups to just one.
The idea left township residents with mixed feelings.
“Maybe the money savings is not really because the city is more efficient, but maybe it’s just because our services would be reduced under the new plan, so somebody needs to figure out what those numbers are,” said Naperville Township Resident, H.R. Hoffman.
“I believe this type of initiative has a great potential to provide services to the stake-holders of these communities at a considerable amount of cost to the taxpayers,” said Naperville Resident James Haselhorst.
Trustee Bob Wegner, the only vote against the proposal didn’t like the idea of losing representation at the township level, seeing as highway staff would be reduced from seven people to two.
“Governments divest themselves, turn things over to local control which in turn saves money-I haven’t heard any of that, I’ve heard taxation without representation which is what started this country on the great path that it’s been, I will not vote to endorse this now or without the approval of the highway commissioner,” said Trustee Wegner.
But that approval may not come, as Stan Wojtasiak, who would have final say on the matter, wants to see the proposal handled differently.
“I feel that it’s too big of a decision to and involves the lives of too many people and too much money involved for one person to make that decision, I believe it has to come from the voters,” said Stan Wojtasiak, Naperville Township Highway Commissioner.
In the case of this vote, a dialogue has now been opened to move the conversation forward.
“I think it’s an opportunity for us to lead the way to deliver smarter efficient government, but this step, let me be clear is to simply endorse the consideration which would lead to hearings and further analysis,” said Rachel Ossyra, Naperville Township Supervisor.
If the plan were to move forward, the city would be responsible for maintaining the township’s 16 miles of roads.
Naperville News 17’s Alyssa Bochenek reports.
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