Part 4: Is Bloomington a Bank?

By:  Diane Benjamin Part 1   https://blnnews.com/2018/12/26/is-bloomington-a-bank/ Part 2  https://blnnews.com/2018/12/28/part-2-is-bloomington-a-bank/ Part 3  https://blnnews.com/2018/12/28/part-3-is-bloomington-a-bank/ One thing I haven’t posted yet is how much Community Block Grant money is loaned out.  The list goes back to 1981, some of them are obviously un-collectible.  Some of the people listed do not appear as owning a home in the County Assessor’s database […]

A Fireman’s story

By:  Diane Benjamin Bloomington may have a problem with one of their firefighters.  Unfortunately most of the information I received under FOIA is redacted.  Since he hasn’t been charged or even disciplined, I am withholding his name.  The sources that gave me information claim this isn’t the only problem this guy has had, he just […]

Part 3 – Is Bloomington a Bank?

By:  Diane Benjamin Part 1   https://blnnews.com/2018/12/26/is-bloomington-a-bank/ Part 2  https://blnnews.com/2018/12/28/part-2-is-bloomington-a-bank/ In Part 2 I showed loans made from the General Fund.  How did that happen?  You pay taxes to the City of Bloomington expecting it to be used for essential services.  I doubt anybody pays taxes so their wealth can be redistributed to those who can’t afford […]

Part 2: Is Bloomington a Bank?

By:  Diane Benjamin See Part 1 here:   https://blnnews.com/2018/12/26/is-bloomington-a-bank/ The lists I received by FOIA show 4 types of loans. Deferred loans from the General Fund Loans receiving payments from the General Fund Deferred loans using CDBG money Loans receiving payments made with CDBG money The General Fund is tax money received locally.  CDBG money is […]

State Farm becomes better neighbor!

By:  Diane Benjamin In case you didn’t see the update to this story:  https://blnnews.com/2018/12/21/state-farm-not-a-good-neighbor/ I received a call from a claims supervisor on Christmas Eve.  She had obviously either read or heard about the story. On December 26th I received a call early from the guy I had been working with.  I just signed the release […]

New Years Eve canceled at Arena

By:  Diane Benjamin This event was scheduled last August for New Year’s Eve:     http://www.grossingermotorsarena.com/arena-info/news/article/2018/08/grossinger-motors-arena-to-host-new-years-eve-featuring-hairball The website doesn’t say when or why it as canceled, but it is canceled: https://www1.ticketmaster.com/hairball/event/07005515D35C66E5 A concert is scheduled for January 19th – Old Dominion.   Monster Trucks is coming February 8-10. See upcoming events here:  http://www.grossingermotorsarena.com/events-and-tickets/calendar Hockey doesn’t generate enough money […]

Is Bloomington a Bank?

By:  Diane Benjamin This is going to be a multi-part project.  Part 1. I’ve written before about all the “loans” that show up on bills and payroll.  There are also numerous “grants”, but I’m not looking at those yet.  Most, if not all, are labeled CD – Rehab.  CD may stand for Community Development.  Some […]

Want some Positive news?

By: Diane Benjamin Earlier this month I reported $3000 for gift card purchases on Bloomington’s Bills and Payroll:   https://blnnews.com/2018/12/07/gift-cards-green-top-and-slbb/ Obtained by FOIA: Walmart gave the City the money for Shop with a Cop.  I know from numerous emails that DCFS was involved in choosing the kids, but there was a waiting list of kids who […]

Merry Christmas Rivian!

By:  Diane Benjamin Remember this?     https://blnnews.com/2018/12/14/more-on-normal-for-monday/ I filed a FOIA request to find out what it is. This is not one, but TWO Rivian vehicles purchased with  money stolen from the taxpayers of Normal. Supporting local businesses can’t be the goal since Normal spent more than $25,000 for gift cards at the anything-but-locally owned […]

Charges to be re-filed against John Butler

By:  Diane Benjamin The charges previously dismissed by a judge against John Butler for theft from the Coliseum are going to be re-filed on January 2nd. A reader asked me after he noticed an arraignment scheduled on the County website.  I emailed State’s Attorney Don Knapp and asked him what was going on, this was […]

Gala! This is excellence?

By:  Diane Benjamin The McLean County Chamber of Commerce if holding their 10th Annual Gala to hand out “Business Excellence Awards”. The cost is a tiny $125 per person.  You can be a sponsor for between $500 and $5000, depending on how many accolades you want to receive at the event. WGLT – Public Taxpayer […]

Since Congress doesn’t want the wall . . .

A triple amputee veterans decided We The People should have a voice since Congress barely cares about illegal immigration. He started a GoFundMe site to raise money to build the wall on December 16th.  Right now it has raised close to $5.3 million! Read his story a track the progress here:    https://www.gofundme.com/TheTrumpWall?pc=fb_dn_cpgntopnavlarge_r&rcid=r01-154532926709-8228101102904991&utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=fb_dn_cpgntopnavlarge_r&fbclid=IwAR0mKlmHM8uO77_lc5SX5lkIK39oYyS9SBONMgNVWBOyvX7UJAgNNwIthxo  

Black Lives Matter – Christmas Bail

By:  Diane Benjamin The Local Black Lives Matter group is raising money to get somebody out of jail for Christmas.  Remember when they did the Mother’s Day and Father’s bailouts? Maybe it’s just me, but keeping people from getting arrested by teaching them laws matter would be a better approach.  Everything in stores is more […]

Hawaiian Christmas?

By:  Diane Benjamin The Library is going to be closed on December 24th, 25th, 31st and January 1st.  That is twice the time off the Post Office gets.      https://bloomingtonlibrary.libcal.com/           This pic below is from inside Bloomington City Hall.  Evidently the over-taxes citizens aren’t the only ones dreaming of leaving Illinois. […]

Congrats Scott Laughlin

By:  Diane Benjamin Earlier this week Scott had Dick Durbin on his morning show (WJBC).  Since the Farm Bill just passed, it was a hot topic.  The Farm bill is around 80% Food Stamps (SNAP) and nothing to do with farms.  The 20% left enables corporate farms, not the little guys – but that’s a […]

Bloomington Council last night

By:  Diane Benjamin This Council meeting was shorter than Normal’s last night.  The video is only 38 minutes long, but the meeting didn’t start at zero. The Council gushed over departing City Clerk Cherry Lawson.  Keep in mind she has only been here since June of 2015.  Taxpayers paid over $2600 to move her here […]

Normal’s money grab

by:  Diane Benjamin Scott Preston was absent Nobody pulled the $127,000 to cover the Children’s Discovery Museum spending.  Bury it and move on.  This was by far the most read story of the week:   https://blnnews.com/2018/12/15/oops-more-on-normal-for-monday/ Three people spoke at public comment.  The first was Andy Shirk of Beer Nuts, he was in favor of the […]

Proposed Zoning may crush you

By:  Diane Benjamin Proposed Zoning ordinance:   http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=20438 Normally when changes are made to existing ordinances the original version is used as a baseline document.  Parts are crossed out and the proposed changes are listed.  This document is not presented like that.  Therefore, it must be a total re-write of all zoning ordinances.  Considering the document […]

Meet David Krupa

Meet David Krupa and help him take out Mike Madigan’s General! I am sending this to my entire statewide email list and beyond.  And I am asking all of you to send this guy $10 to keep his fight going against the Madigan Machine. See how to contribute below. Here is the headline of the recent John […]

Oops: More on Normal for Monday

By:  Diane Benjamin The Children’s Discovery Museum has a new Wind exhibit.  Just like real wind turbines, it was subsidized with tax dollars.  They got a grant from the bankrupt State of Illinois – Department of Natural Resources. The grant didn’t cover the entire expense however.  The problem is somebody forgot to get Council approval […]

Housing Alert!

By:  Diane Benjamin This is from a website that helps “home flippers” find good markets.    https://www.housingalerts.com/blog/market-report/104-declining-markets-quarterly/? It has a list of the top 104 markets in the country with ONE quarter declining values.  They suggest multiplying the percent by 4 to estimate the yearly decline.   This is a nationwide list with way too many Illinois cities! […]

More on Normal for Monday

By:  Diane Benjamin The Open Meetings Act REQUIRES approval of minutes within 30 days.  It’s a law, but who follows the law anymore?  On the agenda for Monday is:    http://www.normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/3138 Somebody can’t count or were they planing to bury what happened?  Yes I filed with the AG and they likely got a letter. The extremely […]

Chickens, bees, bikes, and plants

By:  Diane Benjamin The Planning Commission delayed sending the new zoning ordinance to the Council over concerns in historic districts. What you need to see are the minutes from their last meeting.  They aren’t listed separately on the City website, but they are included in the packet for yesterday’s meeting.       http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=20520 PDF page […]

Springfield got the Tiger grant

By:  Diane Benjamin Normal will have to keep tossing money to their Tiger Grant  Application Service.  Just since May 2018, they have spent $348,389.08  trying to get free money:    https://blnnews.com/2018/10/15/normal-is-following-the-plan/ The only BUILD (Tiger) grant in Illinois went to Springfield for high-speed rail – see PDF page 27:   https://www.transportation.gov/sites/dot.gov/files/docs/policy-initiatives/327856/build-fact-sheets-121118-355pm-update.pdf The announcement was made yesterday. Where […]

UPDATE: If this isn’t prosecuted, there is no justice!

Madigan backed down and withdrew the challenge!  The kid is on the ballot. Chances of anybody being prosecuted are zero. https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/columnists/kass/ct-met-chicago-13th-ward-alderman-election-kass-20181215-story.html   By:  Diane Benjamin Unless you read the Chicago Tribune or John Kass’s column, you may not be aware of the Chicago farce happening now.  We hear stories of corruption and disappearing money, but […]

End of Bloomington starts tomorrow

By:  Diane Benjamin Ever since Tari was first elected, a never-ending supply of Master Plans covering everything in Bloomington has been produced at great expense.  In order to get Council support they were sold as “advisory”.  They never were meant to be advisory, they are considered law.  The hard-core leftist on the current Council frequently […]

Fly on the Wall: Emig

Julie Emig will stay on the ballot for Ward 4 Bloomington alderman.  Failure to complete the blanks on petitions isn’t enough reason to kick her off.  The Bloomington Election Commission so ruled. If elected, she will help spend more than $200,000,000. Feel secure now?

Non-Partisan?

By:  Diane Benjamin History Review: Obama won the October 2009 Noble Peace Prize.  He had been in office less than 9 months. During his 8 years (a short list): Russia seized Crimea Russia threatened Ukraine and shot down a passenger plane killing everyone on board North Korea developed long-range missiles China built islands for bases […]

Pantagraph Foibles

By:  Diane Benjamin When the Pantagraph didn’t need their huge building anymore they sold it.  Anything happening there with the new buyers or is it just another empty downtown building? Since they realized they didn’t need that much space and probably couldn’t afford to keep what isn’t absolutely necessary, they moved to a small space.  […]