The Soapbox: A quiet settlement in Naperville, a school honor in Gurnee, health insurance for Des Plaines aldermen and more

  • The emerald ash borer's ravaging of suburban trees could be slowed but not stopped.

    The emerald ash borer's ravaging of suburban trees could be slowed but not stopped. Courtesy of University of Illinois entomology Professor James Appleby.

The Daily Herald Editorial Board
Posted10/24/2015 1:00 AM

Not worth discussion?

You know, $670,000 is not an insignificant amount. That's a settlement approved -- and all but swept under the rug -- by the Naperville City Council. The matter was an item on its "consent agenda," items approved by a voice vote and usually requiring no discussion. And, sure enough, there was no discussion by the often-deliberative council.


Pedestrians hit by cop car:

The money was paid to two pedestrians hit seven years ago by a police squad car, with one victim sustaining serious injuries. The driver, a police sergeant, was suspended without pay; and an effort by the then-police chief to fire him fell short.

Litigation explanation?:

The suit dragged on for years, an attorney for the victims said, because the city kept filing motions to indemnify the officer from blame. That didn't work. Not the prettiest chapter in Naperville's history, but maybe one that might have been worth a public explanation instead of its placement on the consent agenda.

Select company:

Gurnee Elementary District 56 is now part of the Digital Promise League of Innovative Schools, a select nationwide group focused on digital learning. District 56 joins Aurora-based Indian Prairie Unit District 204 as the only school systems from Illinois. The league aims to connect leaders pioneering bold, student-centered practices. Congrats.

Public art in Glen Ellyn:

Adrianne Gregory and several other Glen Ellyn volunteers deserve a pat on the back for plans to put an environmentally themed mural on a blank wall outside Olive 'n Vinnies in downtown. "I just think public art is a way to send messages to people of all generations," Gregory said.

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Global warming:

Twenty below zero and football players don't wear sleeves. Forty degrees and baseball players dress like they're heading for a weekend at the North Pole. Just saying'.

Done with goats and curses:

The Cubs were beaten by a Mets team with better pitchers and hitters. That's all. We're with Joe Maddon and most fans on this: it had nothing to do with curses, goats or any other superstitions.

Bring on the playoffs:

Coaches, players and fans will be glued to the televised pairings tonight for the Illinois High School Association state football playoffs. Teams have viewing parties, coaches plot strategies and fans start planning first-round activities. The show begins at 8 p.m. on Comcast Sports Net, streamed live at and on Good luck to all!

Nightmare on I-90:

The I-90 construction zone is one of the more treacherous we've seen, with shortened ramps, sudden merges, construction trucks slowing suddenly and lots of nighttime work. Be careful out there, especially now that it's getting dark earlier.


Budget blame game:

It's an indication of something when two former governors urge more action from the top to break Illinois' budget stalemate, and Gov. Bruce Rauner should listen. But so should legislative leaders, who quickly -- and hypocritically -- tried to hand all the blame for two credit downgrades to Rauner. We're still waiting to see everybody engaged in finding a solution.

Game, set, match to emerald ash borer:

With the Illinois Department of Agriculture having given up on trying to contain the emerald ash borer, it's not hard to understand the village of Arlington Heights pulling out of the 50/50 program it had with residents who wanted to treat parkway trees instead of raze them. The treatments are working, but only to slow the spread. Sadly, it can't be stopped.

Benefits for aldermen:

We're with Des Plaines Alderman Denise Rodd in her call to end city-paid health insurance benefits for elected officials. She says it will save the city $120,000 a year. Aldermen are offered the same health benefits as full-time employees, which just isn't warranted for such part-time work.

Best wishes, Scott:

Scott Sanders, our director of photography for DuPage County, begins a well-deserved retirement today after more than four decades with the newspaper. The world and the industry have changed a lot in that time, but Scott's devotion to excellence in photojournalism never has.

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