Bloomington Roads, No Celebration should be happening

By: Diane Benjamin

Bloomington is expecting to end this fiscal year with more than $37 million in General Fund Reserves. This is a huge increase compared to pre-Tim Gleason.

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The $7 million is this years budget, next year $10 million is budgeted. Asphalt and Concrete is roads and sidewalks, not just roads.

Remember when the City borrowed $10 million for roads almost 10 years ago? Notice a huge improvement?

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8 years ago then Public Works Director Jim Karch stated $80 million was needed to “catch up”. $9.5 million EVERY YEAR is needed to achieve a FAIR rating.

Bloomington hasn’t spent anywhere close to that almost every year since. Inflation has likely made that number around 40% higher.

Go to 1:22:10. Mollie Ward wants everyone to know the City increased the budget 43%.

Jump to 1:36:25. Deputy City Manager Billy Tyus recaps past spending on streets. He claims they hear the people. (Tim Gleason was not at this meeting) They sure weren’t listening when they only spent a few million dollars in other years.

Spending $10 million in FY 2024 is a huge improvement but it will hardly make a dent in roads that have been neglected for decades. Tyus claims they will be spending $60 million on streets. With inflation killing prices that won’t fix half of the roads.

Citizens will be getting a downtown streetscape. Is the Water Park opening for a few months this year? Of course you get a new library, try to ignore the streets to get there however.

4 thoughts on “Bloomington Roads, No Celebration should be happening

  1. All part of the plan. The crumbling infrastructure is a purposeful visual representation of their deliberate neglect. They have NO intention of ever catching up on their primary responsibility of repairing snd replacing roads, sewer & water infrastructure, etc. Their every intention is to build monuments to themselves, pay back the unions, and ignore the hard working taxpayers.

  2. Payback the unions? Yes, ironically. Perhaps the administraion types but not the rank and file. Road work pays the rank and file as they actually get to go to work. But you know that. The whole thing is a clown show.

  3. Everyone knows that percentages can provide different perspectives. Lane-miles resurfaced with the current budget is 1.5% of total lane-miles. The $60M includes Hamilton and Fox Creek which have been included in the budget for more than a decade. Budgeted does not necessarily mean spent.
    Sidewalks and streets each have their own maintenance “plan.” The $9.5M was for street resurfacing alone. Sidewalks have additional financial needs.

  4. I was back in the area this weekend to check in on a relative. To no surprise, roads and interstates a disaster. Tire developed slow leak after getting popped or picking up something along the way. Another expense I occurred due to government negligence that no one overseeing Illinois streets and roads care about. Silly to even pursue reimbursement for the cost due to others not doing their jobs.

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