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:

Three people spoke at public comment.  The first was Andy Shirk of Beer Nuts, he was in favor of the council increases.

Ron Ulmer and Marc Tiritilli spoke against the increases, especially the huge jump for mayor.  Keep in mind Chris Koos won’t see an increase, the huge jump is for the next mayor.  That mayor may not use the Koos “expanded duties” model because it isn’t necessary for local government.  Tiritilli pointed out that Koos chooses to participate in extra curriculars.  Both wanted convinced the increase was necessary, especially when the council has buried the Town in debt.

What the citizens of Normal really need to see is the council discussion.  Many of them blamed “social media” for making their jobs tougher, media never reported what really happens evidently even though a member of the media is sitting on the Council.  More proof McBride shouldn’t be on the Council.

Chemberly Cummings shouldn’t be on the Council either.  She was elected less than 2 years ago with no clue what being a Trustee meant.  She sounded angry the job takes so much of her time.  She frequently has to apologize to her spouse and children.  She also chooses to participate in extra curriculars in order to build relationships.  She doesn’t have to attend Chamber of Commerce events or be on the Board of the National League of Cities.  Citizens would prefer she wasn’t since places like NLC promote left-wing ideology.  She said nothing about actual citizens taking up her time.

Jeff Fritzen tried twice to reduce the increases, both attempts failed.  He doesn’t want people running for the money.

Chris Koos claims a guy at the US Conference of Mayors told him to “put pen to paper” and see how much it really costs him to be mayor.  He estimates $45,000 a year.  Does that include all the trips and free event tickets Chris?  He also claims it takes him  30 minutes to walk from his store to Uptown because of all the people who stop him on the street.  Since the raise won’t apply to him he may have to quit – he sounded angry too.

RC McBride said he was comfortable with both raises.  He wants to expand the pool of available candidates to run for office.  He must not have noticed the long list running in April.

Kevin McCarthy claimed it cost more to run for a seat than they make in a year.  There is an easy fix for that Kevin:


Running “At-Large” means it is very difficult to win an election and the winners don’t represent anybody in particular.  Residents have no one representing just them, contacting the entire Council may or may not get a response.  Trustees are unaccountable to the people because they don’t need to be accountable.  Elections would be MUCH cheaper to run when campaigning doesn’t have to take place in the entire Town.  Candidates rarely win on issues, they win on name recognition.

Since the Council won’t reform their fiefdom, a referendum is needed by the people.

We did find out from Kevin McCarthy the Greenville trip was “community bench-marking economic development”.  He didn’t have to go and shouldn’t have.  Local people can solve local problems, outside interference from other cities who think they can produce prosperity through government  programs solves nothing.  By the way, Greenville has a soccer complex.

Hit play to hear public comment, Marc Tiritilli was elegant as usual.  The discussion of wage increases starts right after approving the consent agenda.  Media accounts don’t accurately reflect what each said.  The only way to know is to see it for yourself.


7 thoughts on “Normal’s money grab

  1. Diane, Thank you for a well written summary of last night’s meeting and the issues facing residents of the town of Normal. The at large Council is one of the biggest issues facing Normal residents and you’re absolutely correct changing it will have to be a citizen led movement. This Council isn’t going to touch it.

    Scott Preston being the woss (slang for a person regarded as weak, ineffectual and overly fearful) that he is was conveniently missing from last night’s meeting. Here’s why. Preston pretends to be a conservative. He doesn’t want to be on record supporting a pay increase for Council members. After all, Scott took his pay increase in the form of hotel room service at an out of town convention. Yet, he doesn’t have the guts to stand up to this Council. The two “no” votes last night came from McBride and Lorenz. No surprise there, they’re running for reelection and they had no choice. Their “no” prevented this from being a campaign issue in the spring. It’s purely symbolic. They can vote “no” and the Council will still approve it. If Preston would have voted “no” last night, there’s a split vote among Council members and the Mayor is then the tie breaker. This is very carefully orchestrated and anybody who doesn’t see that ain’t paying careful attention.


  2. Oh my god, when Cummings was up there giving that worthless speech, I couldn’t help but roll my eyes. That’s the exact same type of crap that SJW’s use to try and get their points across. I could care less if she argues with her spouse. That’s no one’s problem but hers. Maybe if she was such a flaming liberal, her and her spouse could get along better. It was her decision to run for council, no one forced her too. So I don’t even want to hear her, or any of them, complain about how much time it may or may not consume. They wanted it. If they don’t like it, then don’t run again.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. OK, I watched ENOUGH of Ms Cummings, when she says “OUR CIRCLE” I guess maybe she should turn her phone off, and quit smoozing with ALL the “beautiful people” who she wants to aspire to?
    Being on the council or as MAYOR is a labor of love for PEOPLE and COMMUNITY and NOT self! These folks need to go to a coping skills convention instead of wearing rainbows and being on esoteric committees, which does no good for the local community..


  4. It’s like the bankrupt Sears Corp., executives getting $25 million in bonus money on their way out the door. Why for the life of me do people who feverishly waste money get paid for it? The Town is $90 million in debt so no way do they deserve it. Not to mention that these fools don’t fully read most of their reports, plans, etc. Personally I’d fire every last one of them.


  5. This was all preplanned and choreographed, as is every Town Council meeting in Normal. The meetings themselves are a mere formality. If Koos had his choice, he’d hold no such meetings in public. People with rational, cogent opposing viewpoints get in his way. Despite controlling his puppets on the Town Council, who go along with virtually everything the mayor wants, Koos feels he needs a Minister of Propaganda to combat misinformation. Ironically, it is he that survives politically on misinformation.


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