Despite three speakers and a bit of discussion, the city council voted unanimously Tuesday to not change policies geared toward local squatters—specifically, Scott Huber.
An ordinance created last year prevents Huber, a notorious, protestor, from camping out in the city's downtown district. The council discussed—but did not act on—additional ordinance options Tuesday.
The consideration of stricter laws was a request from local doctor, Kathy Borchardt. She spoke at a recent council meeting saying that she feels her business, personal safety and patient safety is compromised by Huber, who has been found on her property just outside the downtown sector. about one year ago.
Huber's stuff, which consists of a bicycle with a cart attached, neon-colored poster signs, an umbrella, and more, has most recently been spotted near the intersection of Burlington and East Ogden avenues. He and two of his advocates spoke at Tuesday's meeting to contest all of Borchardt's claims.
"In any event, as the song goes, I'm getting back to you, mayor," Huber said, towering over the speaker's podium. "It's about facts, folks. You've got to get your facts straight. … All throughout (Borchardt's) complaint, she has misrepresented … the facts. This is what this has all been about. … Words in my mouth and words about my acts that weren't stated and weren't done."
No studies have proven that Huber is a business liability, he said. In fact, he originally came to Naperville to be a businessman.
The council mulled Tuesday over a 1996 ordinance outlawing obstructions in any public way, designating a "free speech zone" for protestors and expanding the current camping ordinance to the entire city of Naperville.
Councilman Bob Fieseler urged his peers to "put an end to the madness."
"For three years into the saga of trying to displace this man from downtown, we're still talking about red herrings, constitutionality and sending lawyers to court … to petition Mr. Huber's positions," he said. "It's really giving me a headache.
"More than ever, I'm suggesting; no, demanding, that we keep the people out of this and focus on the stuff. Stuff doesn't have rights. People have the rights. Let's just enforce the ordinance that we've had in place and still have in place."
The council followed suit. The current ordinance prevents camping in a designated area encompassed by Benton Avenue, Aurora Avenue, Eagle Street and Ellsworth Street, according to council documents.