Call Hollywood!

By:  Diane Benjamin

Remember when Bloomington bought new garbage trucks and cans?  Why doesn’t the City know how much money they are saving by automating?  How many MILLIONS did that cost, evidently the Council didn’t ask how much would be saved before spending the money and now the City doesn’t know if they are saving money.  All they know is the service formerly covered by taxes you already pay can’t be covered anymore.

New reality show:  BLINK – money gone!

Okay, I lied yesterday.  I watched most of the Council meeting last night, except the boring parts.  Public comment is always entertaining.

Last night an old boss of mine showed up – start watching at 14:00.  Carl Woodward donated $2000 to Renner for Mayor, so of course Tari isn’t the problem – it’s the Council.  Maybe I should make of list of all the consultants hired by David Hales for Carl.  He seems to think Hales is brilliant and the Council should let him decide the future.  Carl, Hales can’t make a decision.  Everything he does is structured so somebody else is to blame if it doesn’t work out.  Did you read the bird-cage liner this morning Carl?  Hales is crying about the new budget not containing any new employees, expansions of programs and services, and no NEW programs or services.  I remember you as a conservative, of course that was more than 20 years ago.  Hales is now your hero?  You didn’t used to be a BIG government guy, what happened?

Woodward would have been completely wrong if the Council hadn’t discussed garbage again after passing their unsustainable budget.

Another reality show:  Who’s on First?

The garbage discussion lasted almost and hour!  Start watching at 1:50.  Carl complained about the Council not setting the framework and letting Hales work out the details.  The Council did Carl:  Quit trying to raise the price.  It would have been nice if the motion was “No fee increases: been there, done that”.  It was Renner and Hales that wanted fee increases.  Evidently the garbage ordinance has always been that bulk waste pickup is every other week.  Surprise – the City will now try it.

Final reality show:  Bloomington implodes

Last year 3 taxes were raised because Renner vetoed the budget that didn’t balance.  Last night the Council passed a budget that isn’t close to balancing.  The promised year-long discussion of priorities never happened.  $2.5 million in upgrades for the Coliseum is still in the budget.  Pension funding will continue to destroy the budget, but luckily Renner won an award for passing it.  Millions held in reserves that supported the bond rating is being spent.  Watch the bond rating now.

Meanwhile, its full speed ahead on redeveloping downtown.  Before the regular Council meeting, Renner and gang held one of their Secret meetings – Executive session.  Did you notice the agenda?

Purchase of Real Estate – Section 2(c)(5) of 5 ILCS 120

Since they already bought Sugar Creek Packing, what are they buying now?  Maybe property they will give to a developer for a new hotel?  Maybe property for the YMCA so they stay downtown?  Maybe the Pantagraph building so they can turn it into a parking lot!

Deferred maintenance on buildings already owned continues to skyrocket.

The roads are falling apart.

Carl did get one thing right.  The City is hundreds of millions of dollars behind in NEEDS.  Read the Hales comments again Carl.  Then blame the right guy, afterwards blame the potted plants who haven’t fired him..

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