One Normal Plaza: Making Up Rules

By: Diane Benjamin

I attended the Normal Planning Commission meeting last night. It was over 3 hours because MANY citizens did not want alcohol in the park. The video below is of Town Planner Mercy Davidson. She claims the Town Council brought this forward last year. Actually staff brought it forward and the bobbleheads said go ahead and take it to the Planning Commission.

We know Mercy is wrong because the very first reason for bringing changes to One Normal Plaza, according to their own documents, is this: PDF page 3

Of course the Hile Broads are Koos supporters and consummate insiders, so instead of them requesting specific changes, they had the Town do it for them. It is ironic that Julie Hile testified Normandy Village is 98% occupied. She was (I believe) the only supporter of alcohol in the park. Did you notice Doug Farr of Uptown fame is involved?

Link to the audio only of the entire meeting. The Town didn’t feel like video taping it evidently.

Here’s what citizens are expected to believe:

The Town documents stating permitted land uses in One Normal Plaza can not be changed to say alcohol isn’t permitted. Koos buddy and chair of the commission, AJ Zimmerman, made that clear and he was backed up by attorney Brian Day (3:00:50). The excuse given is that the Liquor Commission controls that.

Other parts to listen to: 2:58:30. AJ Zimmerman claims to have talked to many people about ONP. Funny since the area citizens couldn’t get in touch with him since no email addresses or phone numbers are posted for commission members. One public commenter talked about a resident that couldn’t attend, she was told they only take testimony in person. Rules for some and not others?

Mike Matejka attempted to insert language banning or limiting alcohol sales to package only with limited hours, for example a wine and cheese store, but that wasn’t allowed. Listen at 2:59:30 and following. FYI: Matejka lives close to ONP.

Mercy Davidson did promise to take this out as a permitted use: PDF page 29

It will be interesting to see if she does.

A look back to last summer:

Listen to this video from the residents meeting July 2020. Koos could have just listened to the concerns of citizens, but he couldn’t stop himself from talking:

He sure sounds like alcohol won’t be allowed at One Normal Plaza! The Council will vote August 16th.

10 thoughts on “One Normal Plaza: Making Up Rules

  1. I am so glad many residents spoke at the meeting. It was interesting to hear all the heartfelt comments. We will respectfully continue to address this issue, in spite of the disrespect, condescension, and dismissiveness they show to us, the taxpayers. The residential areas are too close to this property for a restaurant. There are so many other uses for these buildings, that would fit more appropriately in this setting.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. C’mon man! Do you think Bob and Julie Arrogant East Coast are going to subject themselves to the same rules and hoop jumping legitimate business people would have to do in a similar situation? We are talking about Normal and Bloomington where knowing the right people makes you easy money, gets you lifetime employment or moves you up the social ladder. Bob and Julie do more, know more and are just plain smarter and more deserving than the soiled among us they faux protest for. They have even written books and you haven’t. So sit down and shut up and let the BN cultured have their way again. You should be glad they have chosen your neighborhood to upgrade. They may even reach out to you and offer you a job as a waiter for their next Plaza sorree.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Koos is bought and paid for by the Hile Broad tribe. Julie even brought Dylan out last night to show the overwhelming support for what she wants the town of Normal to do for her.


  3. We begged for the alcohol part removed. Pam and Mercy told us over and over they could not change what was going to the council. Stan Nord even shared email Pam sent him saying she would not allow her staff to remove the alcohol parts. Now Mercy says she will remove Wine and Liquor Store…I don’t believe her for s second.

    It is a total crock of lies talking with the Town of Normal especially Mercy and Pam. Normal needs to start hiring HONEST people!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Koos: “They didn’t have an opinion one way or another coming into this…”

    Bull! Koos was trying to keep this from being a campaign issue and was just trying to get out in front of Marc Tiritilli. It worked and now the neighbors are screwed.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Let me show again how the city of normal works many years ago as a business owner in downtown normal I went to all the business owners in downtown normal to let them know of all the on street parking that the city was eliminating I was thrown out of babbits books by Brian babbit he told me he did not care about on street parking as all his business was done online mayor koos at that time assigned a committee to assess on the street parking guess who he put in charge of the committee BRIAN BABBIT the person who could care less about on street parking. My last communication with normal staff, mercy about picnic tables when she said she talked to all business owners not me she said she would keep me posted about any further discussion about parking on the street since then not a word. If you think you can trust normal leaders or staff I have a bridge to sell you!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Pam had no problem lying to the feds that Normal was “fully committed” to the underpass before it was even voted on.
    Mercy is the biggest single obstacle for us developing in Normal again. We questioned her once when her landscaping requirements went well past the code.. We called Koos and 2 councilmen about it and they all said whatever Mercy said was what we had to do. Every interaction with Normal was horrible after that.
    I have no doubt Koos would lie to anyone to get his way. No one on the council even cares but Stan Nord.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. We are relocating to “BN” for a job. A friend recommended this site to get a feel for the local political climates of B and N. We found few negatives about the surrounding towns, some about Bloomington, but the majority about Normal. To an outsider, it seems Normal does not consider the residents with Bloomington not far behind. We are moving from a city that ignores the locals and caters to the elites. We are greatful for what you published. Which towns within 20min of Normal have a reputation for fiscal conservatism, listening to their residents, and good schools?

    Liked by 1 person

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