FOIA fail – again and again

By:  Diane Benjamin

A reader told me at the end of April the Bloomington Public Library was running ads on a Peoria TV station.  On April 30th I filed a FOIA request for the ad and what they are spending on advertising.

Keep in mind the City of Bloomington spends a fortune on IT and software.  I’ve received other FOIA requests via drop box when they thought files were too big to email.

Not this time!  They think I’m going to make a trip downtown on their crappy roads and pay them .50 (FIFTY CENTS) for a DVD.  Maybe this is the new catalyst project to get people downtown!

They offered to mail it for no additional cost (like that makes sense):

They didn’t bother to email how much the library spent on advertising or reference that part in their response.

Are they afraid of the truth?

Maybe I should pay by credit card, processing would probably cost more than they collect.  Or they could just use drop box and save everyone the time.

That’s not the only FOIA fail!

I FOIA’d the minutes for the Sister Cities Committee back on April 18th.  I reminded the City Clerk yesterday that I had still not received them.  Today I received a notice that my FOIA was denied – because they were now on the Sister Cities website.

They are there now and in no particular order:

As I reported in April ( ), no minutes had been posted since June of 2017.  5 months of 2017 meetings were missing and 5 months of 2018.  Reading them in order is a challenge.  April 2018 is listed twice.  Since ALL of the minutes reference approving the minutes of the previous meeting, there is no valid reason for not posting them to the website as soon as they are approved.

From the March 2018 minutes:

The April minutes show the number going up to 11.  There is no mention of who is paying for this trip.

Since the minutes offer no benefits to the community as a whole, this group should be cut loose from all Bloomington and Normal funding.  They can’t post timely minutes and they do use taxpayer money.  The do receive donations from outside sources, they don’t need taxpayer dollars.

There was one FUNNY note in the August 2017 minutes.  Remember when Tari Renner tried to claim his girlfriend was an official ambassador on the Japan trip?  Remember he claimed the Sister Cities Committee was all upset in Japan because they had failed to post minutes it was being questioned here?  Remember how NOBODY on the Committee has explained what Tari was really up to in Japan?

Was this note to try to keep Tari from being charged?

To date, there is no other mentions of Margo in any other minutes.

Yes, the investigation is still going on.  Justice delayed is justice denied.







6 thoughts on “FOIA fail – again and again

  1. Is there any comments in the minutes about why Renner charge hotel accommodations and meals on the City owned P-Card while in Japan when the hosting City provided room and board for all visitors?


  2. Tari IS a farce and so is his “girlfriend” We SHOULD have done away with this program YEARS ago OR made it a “sponsorship” thing and NOT at taxpayer expense. As for non profits running ads on TV how the mcLean county museum of history running ads on WTVP for their Lincoln exhibit? One non profit supporting another? What’s THAT about, other then spending OUR dollar!


  3. Sad but TRUE thing about museums. WHEN they have money they buy WHAT they need, and then the start “exploring” what they THINK they need for future exhibits. THEN they lose their focus. I see where the Lincoln museum in Springfield has a $10 million dollar note due for Lincolns hat, etc. I hope they find some “private” donors.

    Liked by 1 person

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