By: Diane Benjamin
Bloomington taxpayers have been abused by their government. Government’s job is not to run people’s lives with subsidized business, subsidized economic development, and subsidized entertainment. Taxpayers get to pay for “Quality of Life” as defined by government, it has no resemblance to what most citizens pick as “quality”.
Tari Renner has been told over and over by citizens Needs before Wants. “Needs” is being defined by Renner as a downtown hotel and much higher taxes. Citizens want the roads fixed. The budget has gone up $40,000,000 since Renner was elected, now he wants to borrow more to fix the roads.
Below is some of the history of how taxpayers paid for a completely outfitted fire station that has NEVER been used. It is located in David Sage’s Ward on 6 Points Road, I didn’t see objections by him to the project. The station at the airport was being built at the same time. Staff could not be afforded for both locations, so #5 is now a storage shed where occasional meetings take place.
I’m writing this summary for one purpose: Stockton and the Council thought they were doing the right thing at the time. They thought development would continue in the south-west corner of the City. They were wrong.
Bloomington has a Political Science professor now for Mayor. The Council in 2006-2007 totally blew “public safety” at taxpayer expense. The current Mayor and Council think they can control economic development with tax breaks. They think a downtown hotel is essential. Now add the Coliseum history to the unused fire station history. Throw in the unused water tower too. (Some day I will figure out what that cost taxpayers)
A Political Science Professor is going to get this right? All these other disasters had consultants guiding them too. Don’t forget Renner claimed for months the Front and Center building couldn’t be saved. Now it can. Anybody believe the City can get a hotel right?
Station #5 history:
Groundbreaking for Fire Station #5 was in April 2007. The then Fire Chief Keith Ranney said some people will say building it is premature. The Mayor Steve Stockton called it “back to basics” after the City invested in the Coliseum and the BCPA at the expense of roads, sewers, and public safety.
- The City bought 2 acres, then needed an additional .47. Total land cost: a little over $271,000
3. Design of the Fire Station cost $301,900:
6. I saw a David Hales comment stating the total cost of #5 was $5,000,000. The construction cost may not have included all the inside finishing.
7. The station has leaked from the beginning because the blocks were not waterproof. They tried applying a sealant from the builder.
8. Once the station was finished the City realized the expected residential growth in the area wasn’t happening.
Poof! Millions wasted.