By: Diane Benjamin
Alderman Amelia Buragas on WJBC: http://cdn.stationcaster.com/stations/wjbc/media/mpeg/Amelia_Buragas__Bloomington_Alderwoman__12_17_15-1450373042.mp3
Apartment owners in Bloomington currently pay around $30 a year to register their property. Buragus wants a small increase to $65-$75. According to Amelia, Bloomington should be charging at least as much as Normal! She also mentions Urbana. How much does Champaign charge Amelia? I don’t see any fee on their website, maybe they hid it.
Only a BIG government bureaucrat would call that a small increase.
This fee would apply to EVERY landlord – the City wants to hire another bureaucrat so inspections of every apartment can be done once a year. It doesn’t matter if you have always been a good landlord, Buragas claims their inspections find something to correct in 2 out of 3 apartments.
Remember the League of Women Voters investigation that called for more affordable housing in Bloomington-Normal?
I wonder if the new ordinance is going to raise the yearly fee AND tell existing landlords the rent can’t be raised to cover the cost.
If not, affordable housing is going to get even more un-affordable. Thanks to ridiculous property taxes and fees, apartments aren’t affordable unless your money is redistributed to help out.
Here’s the lesson: If inspections were a priority for the City, cuts could be made elsewhere to pay another employee. Apartment inspections are only a priority because fees can be raised.
One more note. Amelia claims Bloomington has 12,000 apartments. I hope she means every building will be subject to an increase. Otherwise, the new fee will generate as least $420,000 (12,000 x $35). She didn’t say how many apartment buildings exist. She later adds each unit will be subject to an additional charge of around $5.
Either inspectors are really expensive employees or fee increases are just meant to grab more money to create government’s utopia.
I wonder if the Council is going to decrease taxes for everybody when they finish making users fully fund the services they receive.
Don’t hold your breath.