Bloomington Debt

By: Diane Benjamin

A reader asked me yesterday what the debt for the City of Bloomington looks like since Tari Renner became mayor.  Another reader did the research for me.  Below are two tables he sent to me:

Source: PDF page 36

Source:  PDF page 33

The biggest difference between the two tables is the information now REQUIRED to be presented when previously it wasn’t required.

Net pension obligation is now Net pension liabilities.

Other items are also now shown, but the notes included on page 36 explain them adequately:

  • No bonds were issued in fiscal year 2016.
  • The City continues to issue capital leases annually to finance various equipment purchases.
  • New loans were also issued in fiscal year 2016 to finance election equipment and concession equipment at the Coliseum.
  • Net pension liabilities reflect the implementation of GASB 68 and GASB 71  (Government Accounting Standards Board)
  • The other post-employment benefits (OPEB) liability is expected to increase on an on-going basis as the City’s policy remains to address this liability on a pay as you go basis.
  • Claims payable represent estimated amounts to be paid for workers’ compensation, liability and other claims.
  • Compensated absences represents the value of accumulated unpaid vacation of
    employees and an estimated value of the sick leave accumulated that may be payable upon
    retirement based on criteria in employment contracts and union agreements.
$163.1 million of the 4/30/2016 debt is for employees, not roads, sewers, water etc.
The City can end the compensated absences liability now.  Instead of just not allowing pension spiking, it should be abolished totally.  Use it or Lose it!
The only way to fix the pension problem, since Springfield refuses to, is to outsource every possible job.
Your roads and sewers will never be fixed when more than half of the debt is for paying people not to work.

3 thoughts on “Bloomington Debt

Leave a Reply