By: Diane Benjamin
The Council proved they are capable of sane discussions last night, maybe because one person was absent.
Can Bloomington get the names right?
Donna Boelen was acting mayor last night since Mboka is out of the country because of his father’s passing. Nice job Donna for the first time being thrust into control of meetings.
The Clerk continues to only call the names of those present when taking roll. Why bother taking roll? Nick Becker attended by phone, Jeff Crabill was absent and was never mentioned.
Can the City do something about the sound? Watching Bloomington meetings requires extensive use of the volume button. Nick was very loud on the phone, others either need their microphones repaired or the ability to move it closer to them.
Public Comment had a hand in swaying council votes. Neighbors of Cadillac Jack’s got the request to expand outdoor activities sent back to the Liquor Commission for disturbing the neighborhood peace. The Parking ticket plan got nixed after two speakers spoke against it because the City was giving away taxpayer money instead of enforcing the law.
By the way, the Liquor Commission hasn’t returned to pre-Renner when numerous citizens were appointed instead of the mayor only needing 1 other person to agree with him. Maybe if Mboka gets overturned enough he will see the need for an actual commission: https://www.cityblm.org/government/boards-commissions/liquor-commission
Why isn’t the City taking the parking ticket deadbeats to Administrative Court? 53 people owe the majority of the money, are these people “too big” to prosecute? Past Due accounts can be FOIA’d, maybe we should know who these 53 people are!
This is a list of past due Parking tickets from 2015, they only amounted to around $5500: https://blnnewsdotcom.files.wordpress.com/2015/08/cob-foia-0856-parking.pdf
Look at who had the BIG past due amounts back then. Some of them are GOVERNMENT.
See the entire story – Parking tickets weren’t the only past due bills the City wasn’t collecting: https://blnnews.com/2015/08/24/owing-bloomington-money/
Anyway, the Council did not vote for the Ticket Amnesty plan, they returned it to staff.
Repairs to the Market Street garage barely passed. Dee Urban, Mollie Ward, and Grant Walsh voted against throwing more money at it. Maybe the Council should have saved a bunch of money and built a pool in O’Neil Park instead of a Water Park that won’t be used for most of the year. Gee, a parking garage is used year-around.
Of course the Water Park and New Library are leftovers from Renner when priorities for things citizens actually need weren’t a priority. How is the sale of Renner’s North Main street property going? That $1.4 million could have paid for a more permanent fix to the parking garage.
The new Ward maps will be discussed at next week’s Committee of the Whole (COW 😂) meeting. I hope the aldermen and citizens study the proposals carefully. Once again the packet from last night with the maps is missing, eventually it will appear: https://www.cityblm.org/government/city-council/meetings-and-agendas
The “New Wards” reference on the front page of the City website doesn’t have the maps. They are on the video at 1:46:40.