By: Diane Benjamin
Whenever Bloomington and Normal “think” a spending item is beyond question they put it on the Consent Agenda. In Normal they call it the Omnibus Vote. The council is supposed to vote YES on lots of things at once. An item can be pulled, but it usually gets passed anyway. I enjoy Bloomington Aldermen pulling something and starting the conversation with: I support this and plan to vote yes but . . .
At Normal’s last meeting that almost $27,000 electric vehicle Amtrak couldn’t afford themselves was on the Omnibus vote. It got pulled and passed.
Monday night Normal has multiple questionable items on the Omnibus vote. It’s always fun to see if they get pulled or voted on really fast and buried for eternity.
You might have heard already that Hyatt wants a tax rebate of $88,000. Read the details here – PDF Page 159: http://www.normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/2672
The rebate is only for a year, so a year from now they will be back wanting more. Koos and Council got in bed with them only to fill a hole in Uptown. Unless Koos wants a vacant building, he is forced to pay. He didn’t want the hole across from the train station – so he agreed to rent an entire floor if somebody would pretty please build! https://blnnews.com/2017/03/20/facts-mr-koos/
That brings me to the chairs from yesterday. Normal expects to move into their new space in December, plus a new fire station by September. Both need all new furniture! (I know – they are just like you when you move to a new house, saves the trouble of moving things.)
The total for both locations is only $420,853.49! Celebrate now because they saved almost $11,000 buying for both projects at once!
See the proposed spending starting on PDF Page 38. These are cute chairs – 3 for the low price of $527.80 each.
That brings me to the chairs from yesterday and three more I just found:
Normal is buying:
29 @ 427.80 each
21 @ $721.80 each
12 at $542.70 each
4 at $755.76 each (No arms)
and 4 @ $680.85
I wonder if they held a chair picking party? It’s hard to tell them apart! You can see all the furniture at the link above.
Nothing is too good for your rulers in Normal.
I think my chair is at least 10 years old and wasn’t over $60.
Meanwhile, expect a line to form behind Hyatt wanting tax rebates. Did you know J.B. Pritzker (Democrat running for Illinois Governor and heir to the Hyatt fortune) is worth $3.4 billion? https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2017/04/06/billionaire-jb-pritzker-announce-run-illinois-governor/100119840/
Hyatt doesn’t need Normal’s $88,000 but fleecing is always good – especially when it’s this easy. Any business in Uptown will be able to threaten to leave and get tax rebates. Magic!
House of Cards isn’t a political drama – it’s Normal, Il.
I need to start a list of all the taxes they won’t be getting:
- Motel 6 that got torn down
- Portillos because they gave it away
- MetroZone because Bloomington dropped them – 1.2 Mil
- State cuts – 2% Sales Tax
- State cuts – 10% income tax
- Home Depot rebate, unless it expires