By: Diane Benjamin
Public comment only had two people, one was a member of the Connect Transit Working Group. See her comments at 13:30. She was excited about the upcoming report. It will be interesting to see how many members agree with her. Those who don’t agree need to issue their own report. She mentioned she knows why the buses look empty, just ask her. No need, they are empty because there is no need for huge buses destroying the infracture. The routes run too frequently in hopes of getting more riders. The routes don’t serve the people who really need bus service. The goal of ending the love relationship between people and their cars will never succeed. Freedom wins, the fleece continues.
There wasn’t a lot of interesting items on the agenda. One proves why handing government power costs you while enriching them. Two more employees announced their retirement. The law says the City has to disclose how much spiking their pensions with Sick Leave Buy Back and unused vacation is costing taxpayers. One guy is going to collect an extra $240.00 a month, the other $457.57. Taxpayers have to kick in another $84,002 to compensate the pension fund. See details on PDF page 263: https://bloomingtonil.iqm2.com/Citizens/FileOpen.aspx?Type=1&ID=1056&Inline=True
The law requiring units of government to reimburse IMRF for pension spiking went into effect in 2012. Bloomington didn’t get around to ending spiking until October of 2018.
Since the City gave employees until April 2020 to retire or lose the spiking, there is a mass exodus of long time employees. The City is not only losing experienced people, it’s costing taxpayers a fortune.
The final numbers for how much spiking has cost you should be available by June. I know it is millions of dollars, I will try to remember to send them a FOIA.
Although nobody has said it, expect a tax increase to fund pensions. The Utilities Tax that was increased to fund pensions is short by almost $350,000. Why isn’t the City pushing for pension reform? It took 8 years to end pension spiking, they know where to get more money when needed. They always take the easy route instead of common sense.
This Saturday at 9:00 the Council will be meeting with legislators. (Brady bunch, Barickman, and Sommer) The public is invited even though it isn’t on the calendar. I wonder if anyone will ask these four Republicans why the party isn’t pushing for pension reform! “It won’t do any good” is a really bad answer and gives nobody a reason to vote for them.
The Finance Director gave his monthly report – see it here: https://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=23775
Golf is going to need a subsidy this year, of course the arena will too. Government entertainment doesn’t originate from demands of the free market, it will never stop fleecing taxpayers.