Roundtable Report

By: Diane Benjamin I attended the Roundtable council meeting held today at the Police Station.  Only 4 alderman attended:  Black, Hauman, Painter, and Schmidt.  Mayor Renner did not, but maybe 10-12 staff people were there.  I don’t personally know many of the staff, so it’s difficult for me to determine who was there. Many citizens […]

Making Progress to WHAT?

By:  Diane Benjamin The Council meeting last night was short.  The video is below.  Public Comment starts at 4:05.  I hear most of the Council was busy doing other things instead of listening to the speakers.  There are some CAN’T MISS comments, including Judy Stearns, Alton Franklin, Gary Lambert, and Joe Walden. We always hear […]

Where was David Hales last night?

By:  Diane Benjamin The City Manager wasn’t at the Council meeting last night.  I suspect he was here, since he goes every year: The ICMA Annual Conference is the largest annual event in the world for local government managers and staff. The conference is being held in Seattle.  (ICMA = International City/County Managers Association) Are […]

Who supported the 1% Sales Tax?

By:  Diane Benjamin Filed on the City of Bloomington website – under Staff Responses – was this letter from the McLean County Chamber of Commerce:  Yes – they supported it. I didn’t realize the Chamber was part of the staff. From the Chamber of Commerce website: The McLean County Chamber of Commerce is […]

This months FEEDING themselves!

By:  Diane Benjamin From Bills and Payroll for Monday night:  Page 89 ADMIN City Council Expens Illinois Municipal League $ 310.00 IML Registration for Mayor & D.Hales ADMIN City Council Expens Illinois Municipal League $ 310.00 IML Registration – Alderman Mwilambwe ADMIN City Council Expens Illinois Municipal League $ (95.00) IML Registration Refund – […]

Throwing away $49,152.21

By:  Diane Benjamin Even though Bloomington’s Springfield attorney (Jeff Jurgens) knew on August 24th that stopping pensions spiking wasn’t a violation of the Illinois Constitution, the policy still hasn’t been changed.  See his email and IMRF response here: The agenda for Monday is on-line, nothing about stopping the rip off of taxpayers that is […]

How much did the lawsuit cost?

By:  Diane Benjamin The lawsuit I filed to obtain concession and payroll information from the Coliseum was a lot more expense than the last Freedom of Information lawsuit I filed.  The County has raised fees!  The last time I found a cheap process-server, this time I had to use the Sheriff’s department.  The cost doesn’t […]

Let’s talk Tari

By:  Diane Benjamin One of my readers sent the Sheep story to the Council.  Tari responded with this email: From: Tari Renner <[email protected]> To: Kevin Gerrard <redacted> Sent: Wednesday, September 23, 2015 6:39 AM Subject: Re: Fw: [New post] Big crowd, but SHEEP LOSE Kevin,You should tell your colleague that, as usual, she has her […]

Where you get news matters!

By:  Diane Benjamin Remember the kid in Texas taken off to jail in handcuffs because of his “homemade clock”? Today the bird-cage liner editorialized about how wrong that was.  Too bad they have no facts.  Associated Press doesn’t investigate any more than your local supposed news source.  He wasn’t an innocent kid! Irving Texas, where […]

Hales Lies again

By:  Diane Benjamin City Manager David Hales was on WJBC this morning: At least Scott Laughlin watched the meeting! Where did Hales lie?  Listen at 16:40. Scott asked Hales if he was happy with the Coliseum management.  Hales loves them and went on to say they achieved BREAK EVEN in operations!  That was your […]

Reuters: No buyer for Mitsubishi

“Japan’s Mitsubishi Motors Corp has started preparing for the closure of its sole U.S. factory after failing to find a buyer for the high-cost auto plant, the Nikkei business daily reported on Saturday.” Read more: Wonder how that task force is doing?

Who knew and did nothing – IMRF

By:  Diane Benjamin The below are from a big pile of information I received from IMRF under the Freedom of Information Act.  They all pertain to pensions spiking that David Hales allowed to keep happening and is still allowed today.  Remember this when your taxes get raised Monday!  I may be posting more, I haven’t […]

Hales still promoting bull

By:  Diane Benjamin David Hales on WJBC 9/15 : Hales was asked about the comments made by Alton Franklin Monday night calling for him to be fired over the pension spiking which cost Bloomington taxpayers more than $1.2 million. Obviously Hales is the source of Alderman Buragas’s information, her email sounds just like him.  […]

Consultants, consultants, bucks and more bucks

By:  Diane Benjamin It’s pretty obvious that David Hales can’t make a decision without hiring a consultant to tell him what to do. The list never ends.  Everything is studied by someone outside of government, even where to put benches and lights downtown.  Now rates you are charged for water, sewer, garbage etc are being […]

What’s up with this Tari?

By:  Diane Benjamin When Tari was running for office, he received campaign contributions totaling $1500 from Prairie PAC. Source: So, who is Prairie PAC? Dick Durbin! Source: Guess who contributed to Prairie PAC? BRONNER, GILA HIGHLAND PARK, IL 60035 BRONNER GROUP, LLC/PRESIDENT & CEO 09/23/11 $500 In February, Bloomington hired the Bronner […]

Bronner Group: Getting your money

By:  Diane Benjamin The City of Bloomington hired Bronner Group as yet another consultant back in February.  According to Renner, Bronner is examining everything Bloomington does, including the budget line by line. That’s funny, Council members can’t get a line-by-line budget.  Citizens attempting to get that information under the Freedom of Information Act can’t either. […]

Taxes increases would be easier with TRUTH UPDATE

How did I forget?  5 years ago Tari, Bloomington wasn’t sending around $50,000 PER MONTH to Springfield for legal! By:  Diane Benjamin Renner on WJBC: Renner on WGLT: Tari Renner:  We aren’t doing anything today that we weren’t doing 5 years ago.  Inflation is causing the need for tax increases. 5 years ago […]

Did Upsetting The Status Quo Cost Ian Bayne His Radio Show

By: Ulysses Arn The status quo at the College of DuPage cost the taxpayers dearly and has resulted in the states second largest school being embroiled in scandal. The status quo is no more at the college thanks to a new board majority of reformers, several investigations(sadly, but needed), the ouster so far of two […]

Coliseum: Lawsuit time

Update:  Bloomington finally released the Coliseum 1st Qtr report.  They lost $252,000, but we don’t know how much of this is wages to themselves.  We do know CIAM took commissions of $24,378 and Management fees of $35,510.   Concessions income is a secret.  The Coliseum works great for John Butler, not so much for you. By:  […]

Taxes: Don’t get info from Pantagraph

By:  Diane Benjamin Last July I compared taxes in Bloomington to Champaign: Champaign doesn’t tax everything possible like Bloomington. Here is Peoria: Peoria, Illinois 1.50% County of Peoria, Illinois .50% Infrastructure Maintenance Fee  1% Gas & LP: Peoria, Illinois 1.50% County of Peoria, Illinois .50% City of Peoria MF (remitted directly to City) […]