More on the Portillo consequences

By:  Diane Benjamin

The Motel 6 is being torn down to make way for yet another restaurant.  Last year they paid $38,462.80 in property taxes.  The taxable value was $451,106 meaning the market value was about $1.5 million.

propWhat is the new restaurant going to pay in property taxes?  Less than a hotel?

It gets worse.

A local CPA wrote an email to all the elected in Bloomington this morning about the Normal giveaway.  Carl Woodward has been a CPA for decades.  In the interest of truth, I worked for Carl a few decades ago.  Below is Carl’s email:


Normal will end up losing sales tax money because people will go to Portillos instead of one of the other restaurants within a block or two.  The Normal Council thinks this is new money – most of it won’t be.

Carl also spoke at the last Bloomington City Council meeting about the TIF north of downtown.  Later in the meeting Tari implied he didn’t know what he was talking about.  (Poly-Sci Professor vrs CPA.  Sure Tari.)

See Carl’s comments here – just hit play.  Fast forward to 1:09:51 to hear Tari’s comments.  It may have been a slip, but he claimed Wesleyan owned the property Bloomington paid for.

13 thoughts on “More on the Portillo consequences

  1. Sidebar: there’s one thing I’m not clear on in regard to the former Mennonite property on N. Main. The hospital was razed, the city bought the site for $1.4 million, but the nurse’s dorm buildings (abutting Chestnut St.) still stand. Why weren’t they bulldozed as well? Does IWU own the nurse’s buildings? What, with the intention of providing student housing? Isn’t this a giant conflict of interest considering Renner is an IWU employee?

    The B/N swamp needs to be drained too. The policies of current twin city “leadership” are, to use one of their own dog whistles, unsustainable.

  2. Amen Carl. But, the one thing I disagree with you on is that this is indeed the fault of our Council members. Yes, they’re getting bad advise from the consultants, but they are believing it without doing their own research. It’s laziness and stupidity on the part of our elected council regardless of the bad advice they’re getting. I’m not willing to let them off the hook as easily as Carl.

  3. Portillos I have to take exception with Portillos being stated as just a hot dog stand, it isn’t! It has quite a bit more than hot dogs on their menu!Chicago style Italian Beef, etc! I have been on some of Portillos web sites and seen posts from people in Champaign, who said that they wantedPortillos there, but would take second best having it in Normal! They said at least it is only 45 miles or so instead of the ninety nine tothe other closest one! Do you suppose that the other 32 Portillo resturants are making money? I would surely think so! Why are you soagainst this restaurant and not Red Robin, Chic-fil-a, Chipolte and the new pizza restaurant next to Chipolte! Don’t understand whyanyone is against a new restaurant such as Portillos!!!!!Anothjer question for you, are you against the new grocery store that is being built on Washington st in Bloomington? Don’tyou think that we have enough grocery stores? Or are more grocery stores just alright?

    1. Basic Economics. Normal is paying them $1.8 million to steal Normal’s food and beverage taxes from the other surrounding restaurants. A few people may drive from out of town, but the majority of the business will be a loss to Jimmy John’s, Sonic, Chick Filet, and every other restaurant in town. That will further hurt Normal’s bottom line because Food and Beverage Taxes from the others will not materialize in their coffers.

      Government should NEVER pick winners and losers. Imagine being Jimmy John’s across the street watching the traffic at Portillos while their lot is empty. Government DID it to them, government can do it any business and will. Economic Development (for dummies).

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