Conflict of Interest?

By:  Diane Benjamin

Alderman Amelia Buragus didn’t think she had a conflict of interest with votes to spend taxpayer money to redevelop downtown Bloomington, even though her dad owns property very close to the properties proposed.

Michael Buragas, Amelia’s husband, works for Farnsworth Group, a frequent receiver of taxpayer funds:


Is it a conflict of interest to vote on any spending with Farnsworth Amelia?  Are you going to vote on projects that throw money to your husband’s employer?

How about the McLean County Regional Planning Commission Amelia?  Your husband is on their commission too:

Tonight there is a vote to give MCRPC another $54,212.00.  Is it a conflict of interest to vote for this spending Amelia?  It may not benefit your family directly, but it does steer the City in a direction your family is pushing.  Maybe a better question is why Michael is on the board of MCRPC and an employee of firm that is used frequently by the City for engineering services.  Should an employee of Farnsworth, who could benefit from the study conducted by the MCRPC, be allowed to participate in the study?  Was it Farnsworth’s idea to put Michael on the MCRPC?  Since most citizens don’t know anything about the commission, the appearance of impropriety is noteworthy.

Is the MCRPC plan for Bloomington projecting area growth and future needs already out of date in light of the Mitsubishi Motors announcement?  Or, is Bloomington leadership and the MCRPC going to continue to proclaim Bloomington is growing?



7 thoughts on “Conflict of Interest?

  1. Are the members of the MCRPC even elected officials? I couldn’t find anything on their website.

      1. MCRPC are the Trolls that live under the bridge, extorting $$ from cities to do feasibility studies which require the cities to do master plans in order to qualify for Federal and State grants and loans. Is that about right?

        1. Most of their money is funneled from the feds through the state to get what the FEDS want done. Example: East Side Bypass, low income housing, and it’s only getting worse.

  2. Even if you don’t read the plans and only look at the pictures, which there are many, you can see the plan is outdated. There is a photo of Cub Foods. The bowling alley on Hersey and Eastland is apparently now closed according to the Pantagraph.

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