By: Diane Benjamin
Tuesday night the Bloomington City Council is going to talk about TIF districts:
http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=17858 PDF page 209
Bloomington has a long history of projects that aren’t the “Right Fit”. Start with the Coliseum and the BCPA, both catalyst project that did nothing to revitalize downtown. Between the two, around $100,000,000 has been invested, interest payments seems to always be left out of the investment totals.
This item on the agenda is why the paper has TWO stories today from downtown business owners crying about the City not doing enough. Here’s one of them:
Attitudes like this brought you the Coliseum and the BCPA!
The “Thompson” quoted is Butch Thompson – owner of numerous downtown bars. Anybody think he would speak out against the Liquor Commissioner? (Tari Renner)
See who got TIF money during the last downtown TIF in this story – many are quoted in the paper’s story: https://blnnews.com/2017/12/26/who-got-tif-money/
Think they aren’t big time Tari and TIF supporters? How about all the free lunches Tari bought for David Bentley? For example, In April of 2017 Bentley got 2 free lunches: https://blnnews.com/2017/10/30/lunch-with-people-who-sue-renner/
Yet Bentley’s building right at the gateway to downtown has looked like this for years. Are the code enforcers waiting for parts to fall off and hit people?
From the 2010 TIF report – who got money:
The opinions of anybody on that list should be immaterial since they got paid to support downtown. The paper failed to talk to average citizens. Unlike Thompson, they don’t want Renner “taking a chance” (gambling) with their money.
Tuesday night the council will be told TIF’s are wonderful. The last downtown TIF did nothing to turn the area around. Tari needs to drop the “Right Fit” approach because decades of attempting revitalization by many councils have produced little. Instead, empty buildings are common. Of course Trishia Stiller (of the former Downtown Business Association that failed) thinks downtown is on the upswing.
Good thing the City is investing in mental health.
The paper did have some truth: