Who wants to be a Madigan?

By:  Diane Benjamin The State of Illinois has the highest effective tax rate in the Country and is still buried in debt. Bloomington isn’t far behind. Can the Council really be irresponsible enough to pass the proposed budget? Tari Renner is up for election EARLY next year. So is Scott Black,  Jim Fruin, Joni Painter, […]

Backfire: very revealing

By:  Diane Benjamin In addition to approving minutes from a meeting held 9/21/2015, Monday the Council will be asked to approve minutes from a meeting held: March 20, 2010 Only THREE Aldermen are still on the Council:  Schmidt, Sage, Fruin The minutes are interesting reading since not much has changed.  The Council is still dwelling […]

Minutes finally released

By:  Diane Benjamin Even though the Open Meetings Act calls for approving and posting minutes within 30 days, Bloomington finally has approving the minutes from 9/21/2015 on Monday’s agenda. Law: Why was the law not followed? Maybe because this is the meeting where the 1% Sales tax increase was rushed through.  Maybe they don’t want […]

Pure and simple: It’s THEFT

By:  Diane Benjamin Luckily IMRF actually cares about transparency.  Yesterday I filed a request for all the Accelerated Payments charged to the City of Bloomington because they are to chicken to change the Sick Leave Buy Back policy.  Instead of the precious government employees being told the golden goose got cooked, employees are told it’s […]

Paying for stagnation

By:  Diane Benjamin From Bills and Payroll for Monday night:  http://www.cityblm.org/index.aspx?page=242&parent=9535 More consultants: http://www.ajg.com/industries/public-sector/ Real Estate Appraiser: ____________________ These groups (plus BN Advantage) get your money for Economic Development, but are completely unaccountable for how it’s spent: Downtown Bloomington Association was supposed to pay for itself years ago.   Budgeted for 2017:  (Because government economic […]

More proof: Budget Task Force was a joke

By:  Diane Benjamin See Bills and Payroll for Monday night – the LAST page:  http://www.cityblm.org/index.aspx?page=242&parent=9535 Remember how Bloomington was exposed in the Chicago Tribune paying massive penalties for allowing employees to SPIKE their pensions?  https://blnnews.com/2015/08/26/imrf-what-did-hales-know-and-when/ Remember when the Budget Task Force recommended fixing the problem but never did? Well, it just cost you another $122,735.32! […]

Heartland’s Public Comment Policy

By:  Diane Benjamin Heartland Community College Board Policy:  Board Policy Manual 6-17-15 POST to WEB See page 22.  Part of the policy is something some citizens wish other areas of government allowed: The Board may at any time recognize members of the public for purposes of making formal presentations to the Board. Formal presentations shall […]

Heartland abates taxes too

By:  Diane Benjamin Big corporations do two things: Hire people Negotiate taxes Because of an extensive well-funded legal department, corporations weld a lot of power not available to small business. It’s impossible for free market competition to exist when the biggest entities use their money and connections for perks available only to them. Here’s the […]

Unused Station #5 history

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 […]

As you head to work . . .

The 10 States With the Highest and Lowest Tax Rates in 2016 http://wealthmanagement.com/third-party-research/10-states-highest-and-lowest-tax-rates-2016#slide-0-field_images-1148671 State with the LOWEST effective tax rate: State with the HIGHEST effective tax rate: What are you getting for your money? One person leaves Illinois every 5 minutes. Now you know why. Send Madigan, Renner and Koos a thank you card.  They […]

Buses continue sucking bucks

By:  Diane Benjamin It’s typical of government to throw more money at services they want instead of looking for alternatives.  Connect Transit is a perfect example.  I can’t think of words to describe what a disaster they have created. See the Income Statement below.  (March 22 packet:  http://www.connect-transit.com/about/trustees/packet.asp) Budgeted Revenue:  $1,611,719 Budgeted Expenses:  $11,511,000 Budgeted […]