Redacted emails – WMDB

By:  Diane Benjamin If you listened to Tari Renner’s WJBC interview yesterday, you heard him mention “real journalists” not following up on what bloggers report.  WMDB TV was at the council meeting when both Kirk Allen and I spoke. Yesterday:  https://blnnews.com/2019/10/16/tari-on-wjbc-3/ See these redacted emails received by FOIA.  What is Nora telling the POLICE CHIEF  concerning […]

Ever going to have a Library Conversation?

By:  Diane Benjamin The Bloomington Public Library wants another tax hike.  They are still looking to expand. What is clear is they aren’t expanding for books.  To keep traffic coming to the library their focus is events.  http://www.bloomingtonlibrary.org/Assets/files/bpl_board/boardpackets/2019/2019.10bplboardpacket.pdf Do taxpayers get a voice?  Does the Bloomington Library exist to hold free events?  Is that something […]

UPDATE: Tari on WJBC

By:  Diane Benjamin Ol’ Mayor Renner called “bloggers” liars this morning on the Scott Miller show.  So far I haven’t been able to find a podcast.  If somebody sees it please let me know! This link was posted in the comments:  https://post.futurimedia.com/wjbcam/playlist/2/listen-233.html?cb=1571239016.737804 Tari also complained about negative reporting by bloggers.  I thought I would do […]

Discount Connect Transit rides

By:  Diane Benjamin One bit of new information:  Connect Transit does track transfers even though they aren’t reported anywhere.  Mike McCurdy stated transfers aren’t up when he appeared at a Normal Town Council meeting, so I FOIA’d that info per month.  I got this: This is one step closer to finding out exactly how many […]

Fleeing Illinois

https://www.businessinsider.com/cities-in-the-midwest-americans-are-fleeing Excerpt: Using data from the Census Bureau’s Population Estimates program, we found the metropolitan areas located in the Midwestern states with the most negative net migration between 2010 and 2018, adjusted by the size of the 2010 metro area population. The article recaps the top 20 Midwest cities losing population: Danville is #1 Decatur is #2 Rockford […]

Daring Diversity – how much it cost

By:  Diane Benjamin The Town of Normal decided to let Chemberly Cummings throw her own event.  According to media reports, 175 overall attended and only 75 attended the keynote speaker’s address. I know from emails I received by FOIA some City of Bloomington employees attended. This story has information about the sessions:  https://blnnews.com/2019/09/20/this-explains-the-divide-in-america/ Keynote speaker […]

Bloomington last night

By:  Diane Benjamin Eric’s Too Beer Garden got sent back to the Liquor Commission.  I was disappointed to see Scott Black absent sent he had sent this email:  (Received by FOIA) If Eric’s was doing outdoor seating before the Council approved it, the Liquor Commission should deny their request.   Otherwise the meeting was fairly boring.  […]

Michele Anderson is the problem

By:  Diane Benjamin On October 9th I received a “press release” from Michele Anderson which I read and filed.  I don’t know who else she sent it to, evidently to WGLT who took the bait and did a story.  For an elected official to publicly name call was unprofessional at best.  See it here:  Press […]

Need any more proof than this?

By:  Diane Benjamin This email was included in the latest FOIA from the City of Bloomington.  I didn’t have to redact any names, the City did it.  Names can’t legally be redacted, only personal information (like email addresses) can be.  I guess this couple won’t get any calls for jobs since nobody knows who they […]

Is Bloomington still meeting tonight?

By:  Diane Benjamin If the City Code doesn’t apply to the City, it doesn’t apply to you either. Right? https://blnnews.com/2019/10/13/bloomington-violates-their-own-code/ If they do meet tonight, here’s what’s on the agenda: http://bloomingtonil.iqm2.com/Citizens/FileOpen.aspx?Type=1&ID=1039&Inline=True  The City has already budgeted $100,489.40 for repairs to Oneil Pool.  Tonight they are adding $24,900 for sidewalk repairs around the pool.  This will […]

Columbus Day haters are missing the entire point of the holiday

https://nypost.com/2019/10/12/columbus-day-haters-are-missing-the-entire-point-of-the-holiday Excerpts: Some 60 cities and states have stopped celebrating Columbus Day, in many cases replacing it with Indigenous Peoples Day. There’s no doubt Columbus — and the conquistadors who followed — enslaved and slaughtered on a mass scale. But Columbus didn’t bring cruelty to peaceful, benign peoples. The indigenous people were also cruel to […]

Bloomington violates their own code

By:  Diane Benjamin Tomorrow is a Federal Holiday – Columbus Day.  Evidently the Code Bloomington writes for themselves is immaterial.  The City Council is scheduled to meeting tomorrow anyway:  http://bloomingtonil.iqm2.com/Citizens/calendar.aspx Tari must think he can ignore a Federal Holiday because he is doing this: Proclamation Recognizing Indigenous Peoples’ Day in the City of Bloomington on […]

Fazzini to announce?

By:  Diane Benjamin I think I know what is going on between the McLean County Auditor and Treasurer, it isn’t the huge problem Michelle Anderson is making it out to be. Back in 2014 there was a referendum asking if the Auditor job should be abolished.  I said NO – but the person holding that […]

Proof of a Cover-Up?

By:  Diane Benjamin I received a lot of information from a FOIA filed with the City of Bloomington.  Almost everything is redacted including discussion of Holiday Decorations for downtown.  That must be a state secret! This is what you get when you pay a law firm in Springfield almost $60,000 every month! (pre Tari the […]

Update to Illinois’ Vehicle Trade policy

By:  Diane Benjamin See this previous story:  https://blnnews.com/2019/07/19/new-illinois-vehicle-tax-is-class-warfare/ This law goes into effect on January 1st.  It is one of those brilliant government plans that was slipped into a bill before anybody could protest.  It is also one citizens won’t notice until it hits them. The law limits the amount of vehicle trade-in credit allowed […]

New Rivian Story – Automotive News

https://www.autonews.com/manufacturing/ev-startups-grapple-huge-cash-demands Since most of you are capable of reading, read the article yourself.  This is the most wide-ranging article I’ve seen to date. Automotive News is a more reliable source for information than the press that doesn’t specialize in the auto industry. The road signs have been replaced: Maybe some people can’t read! Do you […]

Did Normal decrease employees?

By:  Diane Benjamin One way Normal has tried to justify problems is to state they had to decrease staff a few years ago. Is that true? Not according to what the Town sent to the Illinois Comptroller’s office:  The warehouse This site was created years ago for citizens.  The format is easier to understand than […]

Normal – Part 4 Connect Transit

By:  Diane Benjamin This will be the final story documenting the Normal council meeting held on 10/7/2019 See the other parts here – they all tie together: https://blnnews.com/2019/10/08/the-normal-circus-last-night-part-1/ https://blnnews.com/2019/10/08/the-normal-circus-last-night-part-2/ https://blnnews.com/2019/10/08/the-normal-circus-last-night-part-3/ The Connect Transit problem is now clear.  The Board, appointed by both mayors, has a mission that doesn’t align with what taxpayers expect a transit […]

Tiritillli Public Comment found + another sports complex

By:  Diane Benjamin As reported in this story, the Public Comment by Marc Tiritilli was cut from the posted video at the 9/30/2019 joint meeting of the McLean County Board, Town of Normal, and Bloomington City Council:  https://blnnews.com/2019/10/07/comment-cut-from-video-tiritilli/ I filed a FOIA Request with Bloomington since they had posted the rest of the video.  It […]

The Normal circus last night – Part 3

By:  Diane Benjamin Part 1:  https://blnnews.com/2019/10/08/the-normal-circus-last-night-part-1/ Part 2:  https://blnnews.com/2019/10/08/the-normal-circus-last-night-part-2/ Most of the Connect Transit discussion will be in Part 4.  (likely tomorrow!)  Two points needs clarifying first: 3:07:00 – Karyn Smith stated at the last meeting Kevin McCarthy said if there was a choice between a full fare rider and one that is subsidized of […]

Comment cut from video -Tiritilli

By:  Diane Benjamin On September 30th a Joint meeting of the County Board, Normal Council, and the Bloomington City Council was held.  This was an official meeting which was required to comply with the Open Meetings Act. Public Comment was held at the beginning of the meeting.  Marc Tiritilli was the only speaker.  His topic […]

If you see this:

By: Diane Benjamin The statement below on correspondence from any government official or employee is meaningless. It is meant to intimidate you.  You can freely share anything you receive.  All documents belong to the citizens unless government can  prove they have a right to withhold them. This isn’t proof! Disclaimer The information contained in this […]

See what Normal is up to NOW!

By:  Diane Benjamin http://normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/3430 Payments you aren’t supposed to question: Why was Koos spending a lot of money in DC? Neither of the claims paid below are to the person in this story: https://blnnews.com/2019/10/02/normal-has-your-vehicle-been-damaged-by-the-roads/ Like “free” entertainment? Yes, the artist is a very talented relative and good friend of Chris Koos.  I’ve seen her maybe […]

Talking Points: Normal

By:  Diane Benjamin The sales tax plan for the Fiala brothers created some havoc for some of the Trustees.  The citizens of Normal are really tired of the Town’s giveaways, especially to their “friends”. The citizens remember all the properties given away to create Uptown.  Nobody would have built there without them.  The citizens see […]

Pam Reece is aggravated with Stan!

By:  Diane Benjamin Pam Reece can’t understand why Stan Nord is questioning the actions of past Councils.  If Pam can’t understand why Stan was elected, she had an opportunity handed to her: Stan has raised questions about a number of issues.  Some of them included Town owned properties being leased for much less than market […]

ISU/Normal: What you are paying for

By:  Diane Benjamin On September 12, 2001 we were all Americans.  American flags lined neighborhoods.  For one day we were a united country.  It didn’t last. The citizens of Normal sponsored the Racial Equity Summit held yesterday and today: Why are some minorities wildly successful and some aren’t?  Maybe they didn’t “stand idly” waiting for […]

Normal: Only 2 voices of common sense

By:  Diane Benjamin Citizens of Normal can expect more backroom deals and handouts to friends because most of the Normal Trustees didn’t get the message from the last two elections.  Voters can permanently get a representative government in 2021.  Meanwhile Stan Nord and Karyn Smith are by themselves expecting fiscal sanity. The excessive spending trying […]

Federal Lawsuit names Jason Chambers

By”  Diane Benjamin A Federal lawsuit was filed on September  24, 2019 in the Peoria Division of the Central District of Illinois naming the McLean County State’s Attorney’s office, Don Knapp, Kristen Alferink, and Jason Chambers as defendants. The lawsuit was filed by a former Assistant State’s Attorney – William Layne Roberts. The suit alleges: […]