By: Diane Benjamin
I need to correct this story: https://blnnews.com/2018/03/28/why-is-fazzini-signing-contracts/
Rob Fazzini signed a contract for the City of Bloomington dated 3/10/16. He was not an alderman when he signed it. He was also not authorized by the City Council to sign anything on behalf of the City of Bloomington. All other contracts were signed by the mayor.
My FOIA request was 165 pages with no dates on the signatory page. I was confused by pages following the signatures. No, I don’t print 165 pages to make them easier to read!
The contract is for internet service through CIRBN. Illinois State University received a Federal grant prior to 2011 for infrastructure in support of a broadband network. CIRBN was formed for internet service to non-profit organizations, mostly government.
Below is a mention of Fazzini and CIRBN prior to his signing the contract in March of 2016. Fazzini eventually became Treasurer of CIRBN and signed contracts for them using that title. Note Fazzini and DeKeersgieter made a presentation to the Bloomington City Council, the agenda has no other mention of CIRBN or a vote authorizing Fazzini to bind the City of Bloomington in contracts.
November 9, 2015: http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=9362
See the contract he signed CIRBN Agreement
Why Fazzini signed for the City of Bloomington and if the contract is even legal is still a question!
CIRBN was organized as a non-profit. They lost money in both 2015 and 2016: https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/461304666/201702719349301320/IRS990
Unit 5 schools discussed dropping CIRBN at their meeting on March 14, 2018. https://v3.boardbook.org/Public/PublicAgenda.aspx?ak=1000890&mk=50279018
On the agenda is paying CIRBN for one more year – $17,880.06 a month. After a year they might be switching to Metronet for $13,975.00 a month. The minutes won’t be released until the next meeting showing if the change was approved. Hopefully saving almost $4000 a month was approved.
CIRBN is government http://www.cirbn.org/about-cirbn/cirbn-history/
Metronet is private company https://www.metronetinc.com/
Still think Government run programs (like garbage) cost less than private?
One more note about CIRBN: They had 4 employees until one left. They are looking for a new network engineer now. All four employees were paid by the Town of Normal and CIRBN reimbursed the Town for the full cost. This was done so the employees could get benefits.