Tari: H**l of a mess

By:  Diane Benjamin

One more recap from Monday’s City Council meeting:

VenuWorks recapped what they wanted to bring to the BCPA, including saving an estimated $200,000 a year in operations.

  • VenuWorks has access to an email list of 409,000 people in Central Illinois to help promote shows
  • VenuWorks has plans for new revenue including concessions
  • VenuWorks would share labor costs with Grossinger Motors Arena (THEIR employees)
  • BCPA currently pays $2500 license fee for ticket sales per year
  • BCPA currently pay $4000 as year support fee
  • VenuWorks wouldn’t pay either fee
  • Venuworks has a network of theaters to help book shows
  • The $3000 a month management fee is below market because of GMA


Alderman Sage went into an extended recitation of the upcoming “structural deficit”.  He claimed lobbying will be intense for pet projects and the decisions are going to keep getting tougher.  Sage sounded like he was going to vote for VenuWorks taking over, a little later the entire Council voted NO.

The hilarious part was a comment made by Tari Renner right after Sage’s comments.  Just hit play:

Evidently Renner was trying to justify VenuWorks performance to date managing the arena. Tari claimed they walked into a “h***l of a mess”.


Who is responsible for that mess?

Who ignored warnings for years of maleficence by CIAM?

Who didn’t secure records when CIAM didn’t renew the contract?

Should David Hales be blamed or you and the Council?

The fleeced taxpayers of Bloomington deserve to know why their interests were not protected by their government.

So, who created the mess Tari?


8 thoughts on “Tari: H**l of a mess

  1. You are absolutely correct and the the City Council screwed it up again and turned down a fantastic deal offered by VenuWorks. The City is not in the entertainment business, VenuWorks is. They have the knowledge, skills, and abilities that the City does not. It is much easier to bring in shows to a smaller facility like the BCPA than the Coliseum because there are more performers available to play in the smaller venue. VenuWorks also has the relationships in the industry and the contracts with ticket sales outlets. It will always be a challenge to fill the Coliseum with entertainment and it will remain dark for many nights, and that’s not entirely the contractors fault. As many of us knew at the time when we passed the referendum against building the white elephant, we didn’t need it and that it would probably not be very successful due to the close proximity of the Peoria Civic Center. It was the politicians who screwed it up by building the damn place , and now they are screwing up again by not approving a very good plan to bail out the BCPA. In fact they drug up old man Jesse Smart, dusted him off, and and trounced him out to a City Council Meeting where he had the audacity to say that not all things should make money. Well Jesse, government shouldn’t be paying for entertainment. We are sick and tired of politicians like you taking our tax dollars for granted. Stay retired Jesse!Alderman Sage should reconsider VenuWorks offer and discuss this with the other five Alderman, Remember the definition of insanity- doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results, Don’t do it. Revisit the VenuWorks offer.


    1. Good post. I agree.

      The BCPA involves two things here which stick at the craw, so to speak. One, is that this is an activity which can be performed by something other than government. The common refrain of statists is that government must do what the private sector cannot ‘for the good of society’. Operating an entertainment venue is not one of those things. As an Anarch, I would argue that there is nothing the state has to offer, but that is another discussion.

      The second issue is the complete denial of an economic concept proven to be sound, namely ‘economies of scale’. For those unfamiliar with this, it states that as a company gets bigger, it is able to achieve better profit margins (through labor, negotiations, cost reductions for volume and other efficiencies, etc.). The city, in this case, is the company. It has been presented with an opportunity to reduce its costs because of the relationship with VenueWorks. What ‘should’ happen here is the city naturally takes of this option.

      Wouldn’t you spend $36,000 a year to save $200,000? Couldn’t this savings be used toward averting the pension crisis that has driven economically crippled Normal to raise taxes yet again?

      I would. All day!

      As always, however, there is a ‘but’ when it comes to statist economics. What is described above happens naturally in the real world, but is never allowed in statist economics. The reason: Statist economics are not built on achieving economies of scale to the benefit of shareholders (in this case, taxpayers), but rather to benefit the corrupt actors that naturally rise seeking favor from those having control and influence over the vast sums of money appropriated from the citizens in the form of taxes.

      Saying no to this proposal is just another step in the wrong direction.


  2. Tari doesn’t like the private sector. He wants to control all the decision making in Bloomington. Government bureaucrats will decide what is entertaining, not the marketplace. It’s not a coincidence that NIOT held a rally inside the BCPA right before the election.


  3. Considering VenuWorks disappointing record with the Coliseum, I’d be hard pressed to hire them for the BCPA. Now that it’s all fixed up, sell it back to the Masons.


  4. They had Jesse do the “dirty work” because Judy Markowitz is probably afraid to even go near the council. What’s new, the council , mayor and manager are GREAT at getting things screwed up. Probably couldn’t built a teeter-totter without a consultant.
    and as for Jesse saying things don’t need to make money. He SURE worked at it when HE was mayor.


  5. Both Bloomington and Normal are getting into debt over there head. No job growth is happening and retail businesses are leaving. I look for Sears to be the next one going bye bye.

    I had a friend down from WI over the weekend and we stopped at the Beer Nuts store out in Normal. He could not believe the tax slapped on what he bought. I said sure we have Flamingo’s and old gas stations to support.

    I had to laugh at that article in the local propaganda newspaper the other day about “quality of life” drawing people to cities. I bet Renner and Koos ate that up. I know most people move or live someplace due to employment. Where that “expert” ever got his theory from I’d like to know.


    1. They need to be banned from going to any conferences. That’s where all the stupid ideas – like Connect transit – come from. The Feds are handing out money for complying with what they want to happen. Cities across the country are being destroyed by it. No, government isn’t local anymore because we need handouts.


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