How Renner wins elections:

By:  Diane Benjamin When very few people bother to vote in local elections, this is what happens.  I redacted the name of the sender. Kids are voting, most won’t be staying in town.  The Bloomington residents get stuck with their choice because they stay home. Polls are open until 7. . . .  

Black: REAL FAKE news–Pantagraph

By:  Diane Benjamin The Pantagraph has a story today about last night’s vote to end the Metrozone agreement in Normal:  http://www.pantagraph.com/news/local/government-and-politics/article_bb09a977-1687-56db-81ae-176d6c2807fd.html I didn’t make it past this paragraph : Kevin Lower signed the document with 4 other aldermen to get this vote on the agenda. Details:  HERE When exactly did he oppose the measure?  NEVER! […]

Council last night

By:  Diane Benjamin At last night’s Bloomington City Council meeting: 1) Local attorney Chris Gramm was fed up with Renner citing the reading of Green Eggs and Ham to the local media as a reason to change the Public Comment policy.  Chris did read it years ago as a protest to Renner’s pending tax increases.  […]

The others vote – You?

By:  Diane Benjamin The City of Bloomington employees still have their gold-plated health insurance and Sick Leave Buy Back.  They will be voting today to keep it. These guys will be voting: Most eligible voters in Bloomington won’t vote today.  That is the reason why Tari Renner has increased the budget by $47 million in […]

UPDATE: What’s the penalty for HATE speech?

No one at ISU has responded to my requests for a comment.  They are hoping this blows over if they pretend nothing happened. By:  Diane Benjamin Saturday – Redbird Arena, Illinois State University – Central Catholic High School girls basketball team is playing for the State Championship. Many Central kids arrived at the game wearing […]

Coliseum smacks taxpayers again

By: Diane Benjamin Coliseum Quarterly reports are now on-line:  http://www.cityblm.org/government/advanced-components/documents/-folder-526 Last years reports for the year ended 4/30/2016 are still a secret.  VenuWorks has been managing the Coliseum for all three of the quarters listed at the link above. 1st quarter revenue:  $770,839.87 2nd quarter revenue:  $275,590.46 3rd quarter revenue:  $677,924.52 Don’t get excited – […]

Fascinating Stuff!

By:  Diane Benjamin I get delicious free water from a well.  You folks in town have to pay for it.  I bet you think your government priced that water according to what it cost them to bring it to your house.  You might even be okay if they added a little to the price to […]

Weekend Fun – Sort of

No Free Lunches except for . .

Diane Benjamin Bills and Payroll for Monday night: For almost 4 years Tari Renner spouts “There are no free lunches”.  Unless your name is Tari Renner:  Page 107  http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=12212 I’m sure these were strictly business, especially the ones with nobody listed but Tari! Was the public invited and I missed it? My personal favorite: PCard […]

Show this to Tari supporters!

By:  Diane Benjamin The budget Tari Renner inherited when he became mayor was $167 million.  (2014)  Page 3 http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=5104 2015 budget was $180.4 million  Page 3 http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=7075 This took 13.4 million out of the local economy 2016 budget was 186.3 million  Page 15 http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=9210 This took another 6.3 out of the local economy for a […]

WJBC – broadcasting through tin cans?

By:  Diane Benjamin From 5-7 pm last night WJBC had a round table discussion with 4 of the 5 mayoral candidates.  Unfortunately, the sound was awful!  As soon as the news director started talking, the sound quality went far south.  It’s a shame the broadcast quality wasn’t better. Ian Bayne did not show up for […]

Still confused about Enterprise Funds?

By:  Diane Benjamin See this post from earlier today:  https://blnnews.com/2017/02/23/administration-and-robbing-enterprise-funds/ The City is using money you pay for essential services as their own personal piggy bank.  Taking this money allows them to spend it on pet projects, it’s not going to roads.  Remember the Council authorized David Hales to spend up to $50,000 without Council […]

What if Unit 5 did this? CPS did!

By:  Diane Benjamin Should schools practice partisan politics?  What if Unit 5 sent a letter home with every student blaming Chris Koos’s TIF districts for stealing money from them?  It would be true, but should they do it?  Of course, Unit 5 had to agree to the TIF districts, so it’s not totally Koos’s fault. […]

Professor Renner doesn’t know the law?

By:  Diane Benjamin Tari is a Political Science professor, he should have known that partisan registering of voters is illegal.  Anything to win re-election Tari?  Don’t expect the media to report this however. See this story from yesterday:  https://blnnews.com/2017/02/22/illegal-unethical/ Tari has now removed the video from his Facebook page.  Here’s proof it was there – […]

Administration and Robbing Enterprise Funds

By:  Diane Benjamin I started this project to show how much David Hales has increased spending on Administration.  The 2017 budget numbers could be immaterial since spending over budget could be happening.  The 4/30/2016 financial statements are still a secret, the 2017 statements won’t be available until at least October.  All of the page numbers […]

Why is Hauman running?

By:  Diane Benjamin Why did she write this? I believe she wrote this when Tari’s petition signatures were being challenged. (Note the City stationary) Just so you know it’s really her, this is from her campaign literature left on a citizen’s door: I admit I cropped the propaganda!      

Illegal? Unethical?

By:  Diane Benjamin The video below was posted to Tari Renner for Mayor Facebook. The guy in this video is Arthur Haynes, a convicted felon who Tari appointed to the Bloomington Housing Authority Board in May of 2015.  See the list of Board members here:  http://www.bloomingtonha.com/board-of-commissioners According to this Pantagraph article, Haynes was convicted of […]

Why have Metro-Zone talks been in secret?

By:  Diane Benjamin Citizens have a right to know what their government is doing.  Obviously both local governments don’t think you have that right – just look at the North Main Property the City of Bloomington has $1.4 million tied up in.  The City purchased the land a year ago without ever saying why. Now […]

Normal’s Lavish Lunacy

By:  Diane Benjamin I’ve talked to some residents of Normal who don’t understand Normal’s desire for an underpass at the Amtrak station.  WJBC has a nice picture of where they want to put it – between the Amtrak station and the Children’s Discovery Museum.  http://www.wjbc.com/2017/02/06/normal-taking-next-step-toward-possible-uptown-pedestrian-underpass/ Last October Normal spent another $1.4 million to “study” the […]

Victory! ISU’s Public Comment Policy

By:  Diane Benjamin Illinois State University’s Public Comment policy used to be even worse than the Town of Normal.  Not any more! See the new policy here:  http://illinoisstate.edu/trustees/comment.php The policy is: Sign up before the meeting Public Comment lasts up to 30 minutes Speakers get 5 minutes There is no 45 day rule before you […]

County Drug Deaths

By:  Diane Benjamin Chalk this story up to I just wanted to know the facts. I sent a FOIA to the County for the number of drug deaths and type of drug used for 2016 and so far this year.  I received the information today: All I can add is:   If you use one […]

Who Renner is

By:  Diane Benjamin I thought pretty much everybody knew the story of Tari Renner’s comment he left on BlnNews that led to his censure.  They don’t, so before Bloomington votes for the next mayor, everybody needs to know who Tari is.  See the whole story here:  https://blnnews.com/2015/02/11/tari-attacks-me-again-not-in-our-town/ Why didn’t Tari slink away? If he had […]

Renner’s ethics

By:  Diane Benjamin Besides Tari Renner, you have to remember former Alderman Rob Fazzini to understand this story.  Fazzini is the guy who claimed a gas tax doesn’t raise the price of gas and he wasted tons of staff and legal time trying to get both Bloomington and Normal to sell him their garbage so […]

Normal issues a GAG order

By:  Diane Benjamin Last December I wrote about Normal”s Public Comment policy:  https://blnnews.com/2016/12/06/normals-illegal-public-comment-policy/ At least two citizens of Normal filed Requests for Review with Lisa Madigan’s Public Access office asking her to rule on their policy.  I asked one of them if I could print both what the Town of Normal claimed and his response.  […]

Today’s GOP breakfast

By:  Diane Benjamin Normal people would think a GOP breakfast would be for members of the GOP.  This morning it wasn’t. Evidently the local GOP is pretending local elections are non-partisan even though Renner has proved Democrats have no spending limits when they have taxpayers wallets to rob. Most of the candidates for the Bloomington […]

Bloomington hasn’t responded

By:  Diane Benjamin I’ve written for months about Bloomington NOT making their financial statements public yet from almost a year ago.  In fact, very little financial information has been released, Renner’s transparency claims are now ridiculous. The City was required to submit this information to the Illinois Comptroller’s office.  The year ended 4/30/2016, but with […]

Normal: Less than 18 years ago

By:  Diane Benjamin Chris Koos has been mayor of Normal since 2003.  Voters claim to want term limits – isn’t 14 years enough time to enact one? More reasons exist to dump Koos though.  At the end of FY 2016, the Town was $99,974,191 in debt!  Almost $100 MILLION!  The population reported to the State […]

Proof: Pantagraph is FAKE NEWS

By:  Diane Benjamin Facts matter, but the Pantagraph doesn’t have them.  Today they decided to endorse Renner (no surprise) and Bob Fike for mayor.  They want Tari, Fike will be the easiest to beat.  Very predictable. Their decision was made on faulty facts however.  They even PRINTED their faulty facts.  This should PROVE why all […]

Weekend Fun – Sort of

Normal: Saturday is the day!

Normal resident Craig Stimpert is hosting an Open House so you can meet Marc Tiritilli: February 18th from 10 – 11:30 5 Crestwood Court – between School and Fell Streets, near Calvary Baptist Church Come and meet Marc, ask questions, leave whenever you want.  Marc is an exceptional candidate you NEED to meet! If you […]

More debate

By:  Diane Benjamin This is a continuation of the previous post:  https://blnnews.com/2017/02/17/how-many-facts-does-tari-get-wrong/ The Coliseum was a hot topic.  Renner and Hauman continue to believe the Coliseum can be a success.  Renner still wants a hotel, Hauman thinks VenuWorks can make a profit. Both of them are living in the same make-believe land as whoever projected […]

How many “Facts” does Tari get wrong?

By:  Diane Benjamin The League of Women Voters/WGLT debate last night was held in a horrible room.  Many people trekked to Uptown to see it, but the room was too small to hold them all.  University Gallery staff were busy telling people they weren’t allowed to lean against the walls.  A lot of people didn’t […]

Questions that won’t be asked

By:  Diane Benjamin Tonight is the 5 person League of Women Voters/WGLT mayoral debate.  It won’t be as informative as the DoubleTree debate because of who is asking the questions and 5 candidates answering them.  I predict only 5 or 6 questions will be asked since opening and closing statements will take up much of […]

Is this America?

By:  Diane Benjamin Do elections matter? Do laws matter? Does TRUTH matter? The LOCAL Democrat party is attempting to create their own TEA Party and training people to #Resist the Trump and Rauner agenda.  (Evidently the Illinois death spiral is acceptable)  They are using a 26 page document that wasn’t created locally to do it. […]

Sports Complex? Got more jokes?

By:  Diane Benjamin Anonymous Editorial writer today thinks a soccer/sports public-private partnership is worth pursuing.   That means the “private” gets to use it while the “public” gets stuck with the bills! Take a journey back in time:                           Preview I went to […]

Ward 3 – better representation

By:  Diane Benjamin Alderman Mboka Mwilambwe is running for re-election with 3 people challenging him.  The voters in Ward 3 need to know his voting record before deciding if he should be back on the Council May 1st. From:  http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=6667 Mwilambwe voted for the 4% Amusement Tax: Mwilambwe voted for the .04 per gallon Gas […]

Bloomington: Last night’s Council

By:  Diane Benjamin It was a pretty boring meeting except for the guy who probably showed up high and started verbally attacking an alderman.  I say “high” because he has admitted in previous comments to being “high” and the police harassing him for no reason at all.  He has also called himself from Mars.  He […]

Bats and Wind Farms

By:  Diane Benjamin I wonder how this article made it in the latest magazine printed by Illinois State University! ISU is a big pusher of wind energy, so this article is out-of-place.  Somehow it didn’t make the on-line version of the magazine or I would have linked to it. If you are Facebook friends with […]

Bloomington: Coming Plans

By:  Diane Benjamin The current year budget contains a preview of where Bloomington wants to go in the future.  An aquatics park has been mentioned at several Council meetings, probably because $8.5 million is in the Capital Budget for the year that starts May 1st. See all the proposed spending HERE The source is pages […]

Fly on the wall: Pantagraph

Buzzing around City Hall, I heard Tari Renner announce the Pantagraph is moving to Uptown Normal. I wonder if they will care that Tari announced the move before they did! That also means, if Renner is re-elected, plans will be announced for taxpayers to subsidize redeveloping the Pantagraph building. You are the monkey-wrench, but only […]

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