A reader wrote in with another tale of bad customer service at our public servant's office:
"I called [Ald. Shiller's] office Wednesday January 6 to find out if I could pick up a parking permit for the Columbus-Maryville lot that evening because the permit I have expires on January 13. The alderman’s office is only open late on Wednesday and I work from 8-5:30 downtown, so I would have to take time off work to get a permit, except Wednesday.
I spoke with Lorna first, who is in charge of the program. She told me I could not get a permit prior to next Monday. I explained I would have to take time off work and she told me there was nothing they could do. I told her that I’m a resident of the ward and it was very rude the way she was treating me when I’m calling there for help from their office. She then asked me if I wanted to speak to the Chief of Staff.
A lady got on the phone and said her name was Denise and immediately started telling me why I couldn’t get the parking permit this evening. I interrupted her and asked her to please listen to my concern before she answers me. She just kept talking over me. Finally I said, please please please let me tell you what my issue is so you can address that directly.
I told her I understand the rules regarding the permits and such, my “problem” is that I was treated so rudely when I called their office for help. She then started speaking over me and would not listen to what I was saying. First she told me I could not get a permit today because they didn’t start handing them out until Monday. I said to her that has changed because I have previously gotten the permit 6 days prior to the current one expiring. She then told me I could not get the permit today because they are not ready to be picked up.
I asked Denise if the next time we renew the permits maybe we can change the procedure or make them available earlier so people don’t have to take time off work. She told me no. Both Denise and Lorna flat out said no to every solution I was trying to offer. Instead of trying to compromise in any way, they just said no. Denise told me if she gives me a permit early she will have to give one to everyone early and she is not going to do that.
Denise told me this is the way it is going to be because when they handed out permits early previously people parked willy-nilly and she had people calling her at all hours of the night and she had to have cars towed. I asked her what correlation the permits being handed out early and people parking hap-hazzardly in that lot. It was at that time that Denise hung up on me.
I remained calm through the entire call and never raised my voice or changed my tone to be rude but it certainly was a different story on their end.
Every time I have to deal with their office it is a negative experience. Every time."