Chateau Hotel and Conference Center

By:  Diane Benjamin

Start over folks!  The City didn’t just buy the Jumer’s Conference Center.  The original lease for the Conference Center was dated in 1987.  Documents from that long ago are not on-line, but I imagine they did what Normal did with the Marriott:  The hotel is owned by the operators and Normal owns the Conference Center.  The difference is Bloomington leased the Conference Center.

I have to correct something I wrote yesterday.  The Conference Center is taxable for property taxes since it’s leased, the owner’s haven’t been paying them though.  For the last 2 years taxes have been sold at a Tax Sale, likely this year it will happen again:

conf taxes sold

The same thing happened with taxes on the hotel:

jumers tax history

What does it mean when taxes are sold?

The County publishes a list of delinquent property taxes that will be sold.  Investors are buying a lien on the property.  Either the property owner can pay the investor to get the lien removed or when the redemption period ends the investors can take action to recover what they are owed plus interest.

Obviously the Chateau is troubled.  This Pantagraph article from 2015 said the owners were behind $335,000 paying local taxes (like food, beverage, hotel):

I remember City lawyer Jeff Jurgens mentioning a payment plan had been established.  I would have to FOIA the current information, but it likely won’t be good since property taxes haven’t been paid by the operators.

If you don’t learn anything else, learn this:  Government used your tax dollars for speculative investment during a time when this area was growing.  Your tax dollars were wasted on a never used fire station, a never used water tower, the Coliseum, and the BCPA instead of used for essential services.  That’s why your taxes have been raised over and over and over.  The failed to see the boom would eventually bust.  You are now paying for the mistakes of previous Councils.

Worse, the current Council is no different.  They may want to spend $14 million+ on a water park that will only be used a couple months a year.  There is talk of covering it so it can be used all year.  You would get to pay for staff, benefits, and pensions to run it, yet another assault on capitalism.  Indoor pools already exist in the private sector and non-profits.  The city doesn’t need to own another one.

Obviously it is much more fun to spend other people’s money than create ways to take less of it.




7 thoughts on “Chateau Hotel and Conference Center

  1. Smart, Markowitz, Stockton, Renner, WHAT A LEGACY!!
    Not to mention the “managers” Hales, et al..
    Meanwhile we get a UNNECESSARY traffic island on Regency/Fairway intersection and DIRT on Front street..

  2. I might try to get a float in the Labor Day parade in front of the politicians and I’ll just throw all my cash out (it’ll be pennies) and I’ll watch Tari et al beat the children up to keep the money.

  3. Really smart here whoever took over Jumers. Jumers was in trouble financially so they could not pay taxes.Bloomington takes over Jumers. Did they pay the back taxes? And does the city of Bloomington think by taking Jumers it will fair any better?

  4. Sad to say, but I foresee more government takeovers like this in the cards for Normal and Bloomington. Uptown is largely government-owned or government-influenced, not just the hotels/conference centers. Hard to fault businesses in dire straights selling for good money, as commented by DJ. And on the flipside, the politicians get to avoid the pain of answering for another empty commercial property eyesore. Wonder if those using the conference centers have to be the “right fit” or pass Jenn’s political correctness test. I’d imagine that Bloomington will start buying up more private Downtown property above market value. The private sector is not buying in BN, that’s for darn sure.

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