Tari’s petitions being challenged

By:  Diane Benjamin A reader has done an extensive investigative look at the petitions Tari Renner filed with the Bloomington Election Commission.  They are riddled with addresses that look like the same person completed the address part.  He thinks it is worth his time to compare the signatures with the ones BEC has on file […]

Connect Transit Lunacy (Part 2)

By:  Diane Benjamin See Part 1 here:  https://blnnews.com/2016/11/30/connect-transit-lunacy-part-1/ See the Board packet here:  November-22-2016-regular-board-packet Below is a few items paid in September and October. Remember, they knew by this time the State of Illinois was late paying them and they were in danger of running out of money. I have no idea what a Vault […]

Connect Transit lunacy (Part 1)

By:  Diane Benjamin The October Connect transit meeting was held earlier than usual, so financial information wasn’t available.  The November meeting was held on 11/22, it includes reports from September and October. See the packet here:   November-22-2016-regular-board-packet Start here: Page 32 of packet. Then this one:   Page 27 of the packet I think it’s […]

Your Bloomington candidates

From the Bloomington Election Commission website: The February primary will only be for Mayor since 5 candidates are running. Voting for the rest and the two winners of the mayoral primary will be in April. I personally know many of the candidates, others by reputation, a few I’ve never heard of. Of course I will […]

Nothing better than LIES

By:  Diane Benjamin One more note from last night’s Council meeting.  Renner lied – how many times does this make?  Of course, he wouldn’t even recognize lies anymore. The topic was Sick Leave Buy Back again.  The City policy was changed in 2012 to make any new hires not eligible for this benefit available nowhere […]

Tari admits subverting capitalism

By:  Diane Benjamin Tari Renner believes in the top down approach to government.  He wants total control of local economic development.  Think about his hotel plans in downtown Bloomington that will steal business from existing hotels.  HE wants to decide who succeeds and who fails.   Understand now why he didn’t sign the loyalty oath […]

HOW many employees?

By:  Diane Benjamin The Bloomington City Council voted last night to spend $894,537.07 over 5 years for timekeeping and scheduling software. Claims were made about reducing a massive amount of paperwork. Nobody bothered to ask how many employees will no longer be needed with this massive reduction of time and paperwork. Nicole showed a pic […]

McLean County: Beware of Invenergy!

By:  Diane Benjamin From the Edgar County Watchdogs website:  http://edgarcountywatchdogs.com/2016/10/invenergys-wind-farm-joins-wall-of-shame/ InvEnergy owes Champaign County $480,298 in unpaid taxes. Recently, we shed a spotlight on three parcels of land in Champaign County which have unpaid taxes in the California Ridge Wind Farm developed and partially owned by INVENERGY which is 90% owned by TerraForm Power, which […]

What is Bloomington hiding?

By:  Diane Benjamin The 2016 fiscal year for Bloomington ended April 30, 2016.  The only financial information issued so far is the treasurer’s report:  http://www.cityblm.org/index.aspx?page=21&parent=36 Issuing financial reports normally takes a ridiculous 6 months.  That would be October.  It’s now the end of November and still nothing. Did the City finance department screw up the […]

Bloomington IS Normal

By:  Diane Benjamin If the massive tax and spending increases Renner and Council have handed taxpayers aren’t evidence of a need for HUGE changes in Bloomington – Monday night you give you another reason. A 3rd TIF District! Did Bloomington elect a Chris Koos for mayor?  Koos has FIVE TIF districts.  He has buried Normal […]

Pantagraph fails at truth again

By:  Diane Benjamin The daily rag has a new story about pension spiking at the City of Bloomington.  In an effort to deflect from the City’s unethical practice of allowing employees to spike their pensions with unused sick days, they even call the practice legal. It is legal because Bloomington’s Mayor, City Manager, and Council […]

Weekend Fun – Sort of

Obviously elections coming:

By: Diane Benjamin Except for the Council “light dinners”, “eating at your expense” is way down for October.  Maybe Hales, since he will soon be gone, is tired of feasting with Council members. P-Card spending for October: Bills and Payroll for Monday night. Begins on page 121:  http://www.cityblm.org/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=11652 ADMIN City Council Exp Coffee Hound $ […]

Communists?

By:  Diane Benjamin Although optional for some unknown reason, this statement is usually submitted with candidate petitions: See the candidate filings here for Bloomington:  http://www.becvote.org/wordpress/electiondatesandoffices/petitions-filed/ Two candidates did not sign this form! Does that mean they aren’t citizens? Or, does that mean they ARE associated with the communist party? Or, does that mean they will […]

It’s not about the turkey . . .

. . . .

Watch the Normal Council raise your taxes

By:  Diane Benjamin At the last Normal Town Council meeting property taxes were raised.  There was the obligatory gnashing of teeth before the ENTIRE Council voted yes, they are all wonderful actors pretending pensions funding isn’t their fault.  Blame the State, blame under performing markets,  never Uptown! The video is available here:  http://normal.org/779/Council-Videos The entire […]

Tari’s petitions

By:  Diane Benjamin Tari’s signature on a City of Bloomington document – PDF page 8:  http://www.cityblm.org/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=11529 Another City Signature from September PDF page 5: http://www.cityblm.org/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=11309 Below are various pages from the petitions submitted by Renner. http://www.becvote.org/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/TariRenner.pdf Look at the printing.  Sometimes the A’s are capital, sometimes they aren’t.  The same applies to E’s. Now look […]

Normal: All it takes is voters

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE November 22, 2016 Marc Tiritilli to run for Mayor of Normal Normal—Marc Tiritilli is pleased to announce his candidacy for Mayor of Normal in the election on April 4, 2017. He has gathered the required signatures and is eagerly moving on to the heart of the campaign. Tiritilli said he is basing […]

Small things should matter!

By:  Diane Benjamin Government dreams big, of course with your money.  They don’t have to be responsible, thanks to the media who covers for them. Diana Hauman filed to run for mayor yesterday, but didn’t attend the Council meeting.  You can see all the petitions filed here:   http://www.becvote.org/wordpress/electiondatesandoffices/petitions-filed/ Do details matter?  Diana Hauman turned […]

Private is ALWAYS better!

By:  Diane Benjamin I remember great angst from the Council during discussion on privatizing garbage in Bloomington.  Even citizens wanted government service because private wouldn’t be as good.  Seriously?  Private MUST succeed because it’s their money at risk.  Government has no incentive to provide the best service at the best price because they DON’T have […]

Another rejected Letter to the Editor

On Monday, November 21, 2016 3:42 PM, Pantagraph Letters <PLetters@pantagraph.com> wrote: . I’m sorry but your letter has not been selected for publication. Thank you. . Karen Hansen Digital news editor The Pantagraph P: 309-820-3236 @pg_digital khansen@pantagraph.com . Here’s the letter: . Logan County has “Gone with the Wind”! . Logan County Zoning & County […]

Pantagraph investigates?

By:  Diane Benjamin Since the Pantagraph has a policy against investigating anything, I was shocked they investigated travel expenses in Bloomington, Normal, and the County. See their story here:  http://www.pantagraph.com/news/local/government-and-politics/on-the-road-officials-travel-differs-in-style-frequency/article_8d3d238b-2be3-5454-8d28-19045f8639f7.html I FOIA’d all three for the exact information the Pantagraph received. One item they reported for Bloomington caught my attention: Bloomington requires receipts for meals?  […]

Normal FORGOT!

By:  Diane Benjamin I reported in September Normal’s funding of Police and Fire pensions was dismal:  https://blnnews.com/2016/09/26/normal-what/ While Chris Koos was busy creating his vision for “Uptown”, he forgot the Town’s other needs.  One of those is funding pensions for the essential personnel citizens really want – Police and Fire.  Somehow the employees on IMRF […]

Bloomington, VenuWorks failures

By:  Diane Benjamin Remember when the City of Bloomignton introduced VenuWorks?  Remember how VenuWorks was going to be ultra transparent? The City of Bloomington has a web page just to recap events at the Coliseum:  http://www.cityblm.org/index.aspx?page=21&parent=10697 The last event posted is from September. The big concert last weekend isn’t posted. Thunder Hockey games aren’t posted. […]

BGA on Madigan’s Public Access

I was interviewed for this story WEEKS ago, glad to see this is STATE problem.  The story is published on the Better Government Association website:  http://www.bettergov.org/news/illinois-foia-appeals-linger-with-no-end-in-sight Illinois FOIA Appeals Linger With No End In Sight Lengthy appeals process, non-binding decisions hamper ability to obtain records through Illinois Freedom of Information Act. After Edgar County corrections […]

Stand up to Lisa Madigan

By:  Diane Benjamin Bloomington resident April Huber isn’t sitting by and letting Illinois Attorney General get by with not doing her job.  She asked me to post this information. I would not have been forced to file a lawsuit against the City of Bloomington concerning the Coliseum if Lisa Madigan’s office had done their job.  […]

Fly on the Wall: Renner petitions

Petitions for local office were allowed to be circulated starting August 30.  Filing petitions starts tomorrow. Flying around I saw a bunch of people in the Christmas spirit at the Festival of Trees.   They became unhappy to be assaulted by Renner volunteers wanting petitions signed! In 2 1/2 months Tari couldn’t get a minimum […]

Weekend Fun – really fun!

Normal-Scott Preston-Truth

By:  Diane Benjamin Expenses for the trips that Scott Preston took were paid for by the Town of Normal.  Mark Peterson was quoted as saying they encourage travel by the Council. If you owned a company and employees traveled at your expense, what would you do? Maybe: Require receipts? Check Expense reports? Question some spending? […]

Bloomington: Ready to tax you more

By:  Diane Benjamin Committee of the Whole meeting Monday night:  http://www.cityblm.org/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=11625 The minutes from the last Committee of the Whole meeting are on the agenda for approval.  This is from those minutes: Bloomington will never have enough of your money with this Council and City Manager! Don’t forget all the taxes they have created or […]

Normal: Somebody should have watched spending

By:  Diane Benjamin From expenditures for approval Monday night:  http://normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/2241 Economic development is subsided Buy Local is for us, not necessarily government (refer to link above) Free or cheap entertainment really isn’t . . .

More Miscellaneous

By:  Diane Benjamin 1) Tari Renner was on WJBC earlier this week with Scott Laughlin.  One of the topics was public comment.  Scott wondered why they bother or why they don’t set ridiculous rules like Normal and the County.  Tari played along.  What Tari should have said is the County and Normal’s public comment policies […]

Judge Foley Dismissed My Case

By:  Diane Benjamin A ruling that makes no sense was sent to me via email late yesterday.  It contradicts everything that happened at the previous status hearing, but it’s still all good.  The ONLY sad part is it looks like the City will not be paying my court costs, close to $400.  Some of that […]

Turbines: County went for money

By:  Diane Benjamin Yesterday the McLean County Board passed a new Wind Farm ordinance that benefits developers over people. Livingston County had a referendum on their last ballot asking whether a 1600 feet setback was enough, the voters there said NO. McLean’s ordinance is a measly 1500 feet from any occupied home – not the […]

Coliseum: Failure from the start

By:  Diane Benjamin At Monday’s Council meeting questions were raised as to why a 10 year old building wasn’t ADA compliant.  City staff said they were investigating. All the City has to do is talk to people who were involved before it was built.  I did.  Karen Schmidt was on the Council – did they […]

Democrats in Illinois want you to pay for abortions!

By:  Diane Benjamin I am 1000% against killing babies!  I will make no apology to ANYBODY for wanting to protect unborn life.  It’s not tissue – it’s a beating heart of a person who has no choice in the decisions a mother makes.  I have to stand up for the over 50,000,000 million people who […]

UPDATE: More on Tari’s neighborhood

UPDATE:  Treyburne Court is the home of a former Superintendent Bob Nielsen, a former athletic director – John Szabo, and a current principal, Tim Moore.  All had their assessed values reduced, but I’m sure it’s just a coincidence. . By:  Diane Benjamin A reader did this research for me.  I really appreciate it! If you […]

Fair Share Tari?

By:  Diane Benjamin I thought Democrats were all about paying their fair share.  Maybe that just means everybody else is supposed to – not them. Let’s revisited the assessed value of Tari Renner’s house.   http://mcleanil.devnetwedge.com/view/RE/21-12-428-001/2009 He bought it in 2009 for $310,000, according to County records.  I doubt this number is correct though since the […]

Yes, your taxes are going up!

By:  Diane Benjamin Mayor Renner said over and over and over last night that Bloomington is not raising your taxes.  Here is Tari’s tax bill he paid in 2016: http://mcleanil.devnetwedge.com/view/RE/21-12-428-001/2015 Looks like in increase to me Tari!  Of course, that increase is due to your house being assessed for more money.  Government doesn’t have to […]

Last night’s Comedy Show

By: Diane Benjamin Below are some clips from last nights Bloomington City Council meeting.   The comedy show started with the Alderman’s names being incorrect on the board that shows the votes.  Bloomington 101 had changed them to their participants, but nobody bothered to change them back. Every vote reflected names of people not on […]

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