Why is the Coliseum Allowed to mislead taxpayers?

by:  Diane Benjamin Yesterday I reported the numbers CIAM reported as fact in 2013 are different from what the Auditor’s reported.  CIAM’s (Central Illinois aRena Management) numbers are always reported in the local media.  The Auditor’s numbers somehow never are.  They aren’t available on the City of Bloomington website either.  Only CIAM’s fictional reports are […]

So the Coliseum lost money. Really?

by:  Diane Benjamin According to the Pantagraph today the Coliseum lost $183,727 for the year that ended April 30, 2014.  Funny how no un-audited financial statements are available.  The CIAM throws un-audited numbers out as fact and the local media laps them up and dutifully reports them.  CIAM issues a Press Release and you are […]

Coliseum’s Economic Impact (cough, cough)

by:  Diane Benjamin According to the Coliseum’s own reporting, the building produced an economic impact of  $98,000,000 since opening!   http://www.cityblm.org/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=6569 Did you get your cut?  Is the City of Bloomington debt free because of all this economic activity?  Are incomes rising?  Are property value in downtown Bloomington rising?  (Not the Pantagraph building:  http://blnnews.com/2014/06/20/how-did-the-pantagraph-manage-this/)  City Manager […]

Coliseum Management won’t change unless . . .

by:  Diane Benjamin When Tom Hamilton was City Manager, everybody thought he did a great job.  Now Hamilton is blamed for all the City woes.  Tom Hamilton had a compliant Council, he was never questioned. Everybody thinks David Hales is doing a great job.  He has a compliant Council.  Wait for the stories when he […]

Coliseum: Part 2

by Diane Benjamin Several times, City Manager David Hales has proclaimed in open Council session that the Coliseum (CIAM) is not taking all the commissions they are entitled to under the contract.  The latest was at the June 9th meeting: . Is he right?  This is the original contract for management of the Coliseum:  Management […]

Coliseum-the facts David Hales WON’T discuss tonight

by:  Diane Benjamin Part 1 Part 2 will be posted when the Coliseum discussion begins tonight. I’ve done many stories about Bart Rogers and John Butler, the 2 guys hired by the City to manage the Coliseum.  At tonight’s City Council meeting, 10 minutes has been allotted to discuss revisions to the CIAM contract.  I […]

How did the Pantagraph manage this?

By:  Diane Benjamin Property values dropped in 2008.  Some parts of the country got hit worse than others.  Bloomington wasn’t really hurt too bad.  So how did the value of the Pantagraph building drop A Lot? On 2005 the building was assessed for $958,778. In 2013 the building was assessed for $400,000! The real value of […]

Pantagraph paid to not report

by:  Diane Benjamin At next Monday’s City Council meeting, the Council will be asked to approve paying the Pantagraph $38,000 for advertising BCPA events.  This is just a small part of the advertising income the Pantagraph earns form the City of Bloomington. Any chance the Pantagraph will investigate spending at the BCPA?  Will they investigate […]

Bloomington: It’s close to over (for you)

by:  Diane Benjamin Does everybody know who Rep. Jan Schakowsky is?  Search the Internet.  She is a confirmed Socialist and member of Democratic Socialists of America.  Contrary to what is taught in schools today, socialism is not a social group or club.  Socialism means government is smarter than you, government controls everything, government must make all […]

To CONTROL you . . .

by:  Diane Benjamin Government talks a lot about Sustainability.  What is it?  Government’s method to control the behavior of the citizens.  They limit your rights on where to live, what to drive, and access to cheap energy because they claim your choices aren’t sustainable. Sustainability isn’t the issue.  America is swimming in cheap energy sources, […]

Think twice about Peter Roskam – Update

Roskam LOST!    Tomorrow, Cong. Peter Roskam tries to move up to Majority Whip in U.S. House Republican leadership. Our experience? Roskam will do anything and say anything for the promotion. To win re-election in 2008, Roskam embraced Obama.  Watch video: Radio Host Mark Levin Facebook here Read: Daily Herald story In 2012, Roskam chose to support a […]

Fly on the Wall: Gas prices

August 1st Bloomington will start charging a FOUR more cents per gallon gas tax.  Normal will probably pass it soon since the two towns have a non-compete agreement. Meanwhile, gas prices are rising and rising and will soon be un-affordable – that whole mid-east war stuff.  Our country isn’t allowed to drill or build new refineries, […]

So, the Zoo gets $700,000

by:  Diane Benjamin Miller Park Zoo is getting $700,000 from the State to add monkeys from Africa and some building projects.  The McLean County Museum of History is getting $254,800 from the State for restrooms and lighting.  The Children’s Discovery Museum is getting $116,800 from the State to indoctrinate kids on green energy. That totals […]

Bloomington declares war on citizens

by:  Diane Benjamin Bloomington is ruled by the minority.  It has been ruled by the minority at least since the Coliseum was built.  The few people actively involved in local government are making decisions for the rest of the taxpayers who are sitting on the sidelines.  Here’s your chance to change that. Bloomington wants to […]

Schock, Davis, & Kinzinger vote for illegals

by:  Diane Benjamin There are two types of people in government:  1) Those who want to control you and 2) Those who think people have a right to control their own lives.  It has nothing to do with Democrats and Republicans.  Voting the party no longer matters.  Eric Cantor was defeated because he was in […]

Why aren’t library rules enforced?

by: Diane Benjamin I can’t answer that question!  I continue to hear stories of obnoxious patrons at the Bloomington Library.  Staff and security personnel are evidently not enforcing the rules.  The library should be a tranquil place for patrons, not a place to dodge troublemakers. On March 19, 2013, the Library Board approved these rules: […]

Pantagraph a fraud? See proof here!

by:  Diane Benjamin I written many times about the Pantagraph being in bed with the City of Bloomington.  Citizens will NEVER be told the truth in the newspaper.  A legal intern at the Citizens Advocacy Center in Elmhurst Il wrote a Letter to the Editor.  The Pantagraph refused to print it: From: Pantagraph Letters <[email protected]> […]

Local news better in the Chicago Tribune

by:  Diane Benjamin Downstate press is unwilling to criticize local government.   Thankfully the Chicago Tribune will cover some stories.  They have a good article about Peoria’s Mayor Ardis being sued by the ACLU for his treatment of a citizen using twitter to parody the mayor:  http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-peoria-mayor-twitter-20140612,0,5493686.story When was the last time the local press […]

Renner’s summary of Council Comments

by:  Diane Benjamin Mayor Renner summarized the Council comments concerning David Hales, and he added a few of his own.  These comments were prior to the Hales evaluation which resulted in Hales receiving a 3% raise.  The Council vote was 7-2 for increasing Hales’ salary.  Hales is now paid $176,439, not including substantial benefits and car […]

Secret: Council members evaluate David Hales

by:  Diane Benjamin Usually the public doesn’t get to know how the Council evaluates City Manager David Hales.  These discussions take place in Executive Sessions – secret meetings – then the Council votes NOT to release the minutes to the public.  Evidently they don’t want anybody to know what they think.  Surprise – now you […]

Politicians aren’t here to solve problems

by:  Diane Benjamin It’s way past time for Americans to realize politicians aren’t capable of and don’t want to solve your problems.  Any problems they attempt to solve only cause more problems.  I could provide a LONG list of problems made worse by government, can anybody provide an example of one thing they made better? […]

Ditch the City Manager?

by:  Diane Benjamin The International City Managers Association (ICMA) sends a DAILY email.  Remember, Mayor Renner used to work for this group and David Hales is a member. The story below from the email caught my attention.  Why would an International group want to promote council-manager form of government? Update on ICMA’s Fund for Professional Management […]

What is Tari going to do now?

by:  Diane Benjamin The Bloomington Library has operated for many years without much City supervision.  They are the only board that can raise taxes without the approval of the Council.  Until recently, they also wanted an east-side branch. That was before Tari Renner became Mayor.  Renner replaced many people on all the City Boards and […]

What Cantor’s loss means – without the spin

by:  Diane Benjamin Eric Cantor is the first Majority Leader in history to lose his seat in a Primary. The winner, David Brat was not supported by any national TEA Party groups. Brat raised around $200,000, Cantor over $5,000,000.  Money obviously doesn’t matter. How did Brat win?  By conveying a common sense message to the […]

Public Housing downtown?

by:  Diane Benjamin The following statement made numerous times by Professor Mayor Renner has always bothered me, see if it bothers you.  He is talking about downtown Bloomington. . Who put government in charge of the 21st century?  Are you just dying to live and shop in downtown Bloomington?  If downtown doesn’t thrive Bloomington won’t? […]

Of course the Pantagraph missed it

by:  Diane Benjamin I’m sure you remember Professor Mayor Renner’s attack on Alderwoman Stearns during the budget discussions: . At the June 9 Council meeting Starcom came up again.  Even though the money for the upgrades was included in the budget, the Council still had to vote to spend it.  Yes, the spending was in […]

Destroying the future-Bloomington UPDATE

The Council voted 7-2 to approve $60,000 for the next 12 months – another consultant for economic development.  Evidently the City gets lots of call from entrepreneurs who know nothing about running a business,  this group will help them. So to recap:  The City gives the local Economic Development Council (EDC) $100,000 per year, pays […]