Shoestring budget? Really?

By:  Diane Benjamin

I’m just getting started looking at Bloomington’s budget.  One point citizens MUST understand:  Paying for needs used to be in the General Fund.  Taxpayers probably think their taxes go for Roads, sewers, etc: essential services.  Instead, roads are now funded only by the new Motor Fuel Tax.  If your taxes had not been raised, no money would be spent on roads.  Last year the only money spent on roads was borrowed – $10,000,000.  Garbage was moved to an Enterprise Fund.  Funding used to come from the General Fund, now the City expects garbage to break even – meaning you have to pay more.  Did the General Fund spending go down since spending was transferred?  Silly question.  More later.

I found something even more interesting.  How many times have City officials lamented they don’t have the staff to do this or that, they did it again at the Council meeting last night.  The two charts below are from the 2014 Budget – Book 1 and the 2015 Budget – Book 1 (page 19 in both):

According to their own data, in 2013 the City of Bloomington was not in the top 10 employers in the County.   Since #9 and #10 both had 700 employees, the City of Bloomington had less than 700 employees in 2013.  Now look at 2014 – Bloomington is back in the top 10 with 765 employees.  That means they hired at least 66 more employees in one year.   Administrative staff got bigger with a Communications Manager and aides for David Hales, no word on where the rest of these employees were added.   

Note to City:  False reporting to citizens on any issue makes it less likely they will believe anything you say!  Maybe you should try doing less data analysis and controlling the message, it’s not working.






3 thoughts on “Shoestring budget? Really?

  1. According to those two documents, between 2004 and 2014 the top 10 employers in Bloomington shed 7,474 jobs from their workforce.

    What has me a little confused is the fact that ‘his Most Rebuked Honor’ continues to assert that ‘Millennials’ are going to invest in a community where the top 10 job base has declined to this degree.

    Either Rosies favorite patron thinks:

    A: ‘Millennials” are STUPID,

    B: He is not as proficient at data analysis as he claims to be (after all, he IS a Professor of Political Science at our little ‘Harvard of the Midwest’).

    C: He thinks WE’RE stupid enough to believe him.

    I’ll let the jury decide which it is.

    1. Correction:

      Top 10 Employers shed 3,601 jobs between 2004 and 2014.
      TOTAL workforce declined by 7,474 jobs.

  2. Actually they do think the millennials are stupid. They think that they as big brother know what they want. They think that the millennials want to stay and live in apartments down town when many will go home to live with their parents because they can’t find a job to pay for an apartment. They think that the college experience of sharing their living quarters will go on and on.

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