Millionaires Tax: Madigan not so smart

by:  Diane Benjamin “Tax the Rich” has been the mantra of Democrats for way too many years.  It works for them because average people don’t understand economics.  They fail to understand that “RICH” people employ other people.  Average citizens also fail to understand that “RICH” people can live anywhere they want.  If they are constantly […]

Bloomington: Somebody needs to explain this!

by:  Diane Benjamin The following is from Book 1 of the Proposed budget – the one that was $11 Million higher than last year.  See pages 48-49.  Click on either picture to enlarge. The City is anticipating a decrease in revenue of $14,008,375! The City has budgeted for a decrease in expenses of $22,683,662! First, […]

Bloomington: Where the money goes

by:  Diane Benjamin Click on the picture to enlarge.  The below is from Book 1 of the Bloomington Budget: Other Public Works has no explanation. How did parks go up to 62 in 2008, then down to 46 in 2013? Baseball fields, Basketball courts, and Tennis courts are great, but the maintenance money is always […]

Why are local governments funding pensions?

by:  Diane Benjamin Local governments across the state are buried in unfunded pension debt.  Pouring millions of dollars into pensions funds will not solve the problem.  It is more than obvious pensions are an outdated idea abandoned by the private sector decades ago.  Local pensions are controlled by Springfield.  If they don’t fund their pensions, […]

Bond Debt: Bloomington Compared to . . .

by:  Diane Benjamin Below is another page I found in Book 2 of the proposed budget. Normal debt is from “Uptown”.   Decatur debt was low until they started to redevelop their downtown.  A complete list of Bloomington Bond debt is available in Book 2.  Payments on principle and interest – just on bond […]

Golf pays for itself? Hahaha UPDATE

by:  Diane Benjamin Both Bloomington Mayor Tari Renner and Golf guy Jason Wingate were on WJBC this morning.  Both mentioned that golf pays for itself in Bloomington.  Both were telling you that OPERATIONS pays for itself, but golf revenue doesn’t cover maintenance and required capital improvements.  If golf did fund itself, why would $250,000 be […]

More you should know about Coliseum Hockey

by:  Diane Benjamin If the Bloomington City Council doesn’t void the contract with Central Illinois Arena Management (CIAM) for violating the terms, this could be who they are bringing in: And this is the group I was told by two sources would be the ownership group of the USHL Bloomington entry.  One helluva group, for sure.   […]

24 IL Legislators turn down pensions – but wait

by Diane Benjamin Being an Illinois legislator is supposed to be a part-time job.  Their salary is at least  $66,876, many earn much more by serving as chair of various committees. It looks like good news that 24 new public servants have decided to turn down a pension.  Part-time jobs don’t come with pensions anywhere else, […]

Renner’s Alderman

by:  Diane Benjamin When Jennifer McDade resigned her seat on the Bloomington City Council, Mayor Tari Renner appointed Joni Painter. I received a copy of the following email today from an unexpected source, and a source the City would never suspect.  Evidently some Council members like to share emails!   The citizens are disgusted with […]

Pantagraph protects the nefarious

by:  Diane Benjamin Today the Pantagraph finally got around to doing an editorial on the ISU-Flanagan flap.  Maybe they had to since the Chicago Tribune printed an editorial: Doesn’t Chicago have enough corruption of its own?  Why did the Chicago Tribune editorialize about the ISU firing and payoff of Tim Flanagan?  Maybe because there is […]

Pantagraph HIDES the truth again – ISU

by:  Diane Benjamin Before I get to ISU, let’s talk Bloomington.  Government loves to bury the truth when a high level employee is fired.  Scared to death of lawsuits, they would rather pass along less than adequate employees to another government agency somewhere else.  Bloomington now has one of those, but you probably don’t know […]

More on the HOCKEY spin – UPDATE

Update:  According to the link – John Butler took money from the Junior Hockey team wanting to locate in Bloomington without Council approval.  What if the Council votes to CANCEL the CIAM contract and doesn’t approve a Junior Hockey team?  If the 7 potted plants were interested in the citizens welfare instead of being buddies […]

Transparent government matters!

   Really.  The Most Transparent Governor Ever?       81% Failure Rate- State Executives Ignore Open Meeting Law Leaders of state agencies, Gov. Quinn’s appointed executives failed to comply with mandatory Open Meeting Act training or blatantly ignored our request to review their certifications. 100% Failure Rate at 17 top Agencies  Freedom of Information Officer Certification   […]

Local Hockey-it’s not a sports story UPDATE

by:  Diane Benjamin The Pantagraph has the demise of local professional hockey in the sports section today.   The real story isn’t hockey, it is City oversight of a building that is costing taxpayers a lot of money.  Putting the story in the Sports section is an attempt to cover up the truth.  I’ve written […]

Fly on the Wall: Pantagraph

Proof the Pantagraph and Rachel Wells are totally in bed with the City of Bloomington:  No coverage of the budget discussion at last night’s Council meeting!  If they don’t report, it doesn’t exist. Wow?  Why report facts?  I know hardly anybody reads the Pantagraph anymore, but for those who still do, now you have proof […]

I’m glad I’m still under Renner’s skin

by:  Diane Benjamin This morning on Cities 92.9 Mayor Renner stated that most of what I write is fiction.  Keep it up Mayor!  Citizens can see right through your marginalizing of anybody who isn’t 100% behind you.  Somebody has to hold you accountable, it obvious the Pantagraph and WJBC won’t do the job.  Somebody has […]

Fly on the Wall: Renner – Update

Buzzing around the Council Chamber tonight, Mayor Renner has now decided to be a bully. The Council was told that they will raise taxes or he will veto the budget! Evidently there is NOTHING that can be cut.  Bull Mayor.  I think I know somebody who will report tomorrow.   Here’s the story:

End Common Core – what you can do NOW UPDATE!

by:  Diane Benjamin I could post Common Core lessons all day long that are meant to indoctrinate your kids.  The math takes 5 times longer because they created ways to “make kids think”, parents call it atrocious. Indiana just passed a law to END Common Core for good: From Springfield, Il – they re-wrote […]

Good Fazzini – clueless Fazzini

by:  Diane Benjamin Alderman Rob Fazzini spelled out exactly where Bloomington stands financially at the Budget Workshop on Saturday.  Start watching at 3:08:00 While Rob did a great job spelling out how bad the city finances look, I don’t agree with Rob’s philosophy of borrowing more money to get out of the mess prior Councils […]

Defeat Dickie: Round 2

by:  Diane Benjamin Dickie Durbin on Social Security: Meet the Press MR. GREGORY:  Senator Durbin? SEN. DURBIN:  David, if I could say this about Social Security. MR. GREGORY:  Yeah. SEN. DURBIN:  I–first, I want to thank my colleague for the kind words. Social Security does not add one penny to the deficit.  Social Security untouched […]

Face facts Bloomington, you can’t afford amenities

by:  Diane Benjamin The most appalling revelation from the Bloomington budget discussion for me was this:  Mayor Renner and City Manager David Hales have made no attempt in past year to see where the budget can be cut.  Renner didn’t want to discuss golf at this meeting or any other big cuts, he expected the […]

Boot David Hales – CEO he ain’t

by:  Diane Benjamin Why seven Council members voted to give David Hales a new 4 contract and big raise is baffling.  He gets paid HUGE bucks to manage the city, not spend it into oblivion and participate in every left-wing  study and conference available.  The proposed budget is his latest masterpiece.  By the way, at […]

Bloomington Budget – more money

by:  Diane Benjamin The Bloomington Budget workshop is happening now.  I’ve listened to enough to know where City Manager David Hales and Mayor Tari Renner want to take the city:  down the same path of the State of Illinois The general theme of the budget discussion is serving the almost 80,000 citizens of Bloomington.  So […]

Coliseum Parking: Surprise Surprise!

by:  Diane Benjamin Transparency doesn’t exist at the City of Bloomington  Mayor Renner:  We are sick of hearing you say Bloomington is transparent, it’s in name only. On March 10th, I sent this to the City of Bloomington: I am requesting the following information under the Freedom of Information Act:            […]

Coliseum: Nobody watches what they do

by:  Diane Benjamin The management company the City of Bloomington hired to run the Coliseum (CIAM) is required by their contract to prepare their own financial statement.  The City of Bloomington posted the 2013 report CIAM prepared on their website (  It appears to be where CIAM gets the information to determine how much to […]

Bloomington: 17 New Pensions!

by:  Diane Benjamin Tomorrow the Bloomington City Council will meet ALL DAY to discuss the City budget.  Mayor Renner and City Manager David Hales are presenting “Culture Change”.  They want raises for City employees and 17 new employees.  Those 17 new employees come with 17 new pensions.  The City of Bloomington pension systems are severely […]

Pantagraph: Brady isn’t interested in Illinois

by:  Diane Benjamin My TITLE is what the Pantagraph title should have been. With a large picture of Bill Brady on the front page of the Pantagraph today, the story is really what they  didn’t report.  The Pantagraph will never report anything negative about real estate agents, developers, or car dealers because of advertising dollars. […]