When Lawyers Don’t Care About the Law

By:  Diane Benjamin Long time readers know finding a prosecutor is almost impossible.  Public corruption prosecutions must be demanded by many people before equal justice under the law actually exists. Then there is McGrath Law Office in Mackinaw.  These guys represent many small units of government who evidently aren’t capable of reading the Open Meetings […]

UPDATE: 2%!

Update:  The Income Statement was not available for Board approval because an audit of last year (ending June 30th) was underway.  Both July and August will be approved in September.  Something else the private sector would never tolerate, but Connect isn’t private. By:  Diane Benjamin Connect Transit meeting yesterday:  http://www.connect-transit.com/documents/8-22-2017%20Regular%20Board%20Meeting%20Binder1.pdf No Income Statement was included […]

We are all racist

By:  Diane Benjamin Monday night the Normal Town Council met for over the usual 10-20 minutes.  Most of the time was the discussion of community policing. Judging people on the content of their character and not the color of the skin is officially dead.  RIP Martin Luther King. Police must now enforce social equity, not […]

Hovering on a cliff

By:  Diane Benjamin Source:  http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=14181 The 2017 year ended for the City of Bloomington last April 30th.  We are most likely MONTHS away from seeing real financial statements, late is what governments do and the private sector would never tolerate. I did find a glimpse into what they will say – see the link above. […]

No faith in local government

By:  Diane Benjamin The Bloomington City Council meeting last night was conducted without the mayor and without any accusations against citizens like “crazy”, “nasty”, and “small vocal minority”.  Renner did hold another edition of his media blitz earlier in the day, but Karen Schmidt only announced he wasn’t there.  According to media reports of the […]

Council indifference

By:  Diane Benjamin The Bloomington City Council is meeting tonight, but nothing is on the agenda about the Renner media blitz spreading misinformation. The only people discussing enforcement  of the law will be citizens – should they choose to make public comment.  The meeting begins tonight at 5:30. If the City Council wants to hold […]

No violation

By:  Diane Benjamin Even though inspectors seem to be scrutinizing the homes of Renner critics looking for violations (sometimes on the wrong street), Tari wasn’t fined for this violation: This is the document the citizen who filed the complaint was told to pick up in person.  It was emailed after protest: UNFOUNDED DOC The name […]

Normal’s Spectacular Spending!

By:  Diane Benjamin Tonight – Normal Town Council:  http://www.normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/2695 Click on any of the pics to enlarge. No idea who is appreciated – file a FOIA request if you want to know: More Japan Spending How does buying flowers for a funeral qualify as “using public money for public purposes”? Does every resident of Normal […]

Little of this and a little of that

By:  Diane Benjamin Gas in Decatur today $2.11.  Gas in Bloomington today $2.25. _____________________________ A complaint was filed against Tari Renner for violating the garbage can ordinance:  https://blnnews.com/2017/08/06/do-laws-codes-regulations-matter/ It was filed by a Bloomington resident who has recently been hassled by the City.  The resident filed a FOIA request for the letter sent to Renner’s address, […]

Weekend Fun – Sort of

Lack of Transparency continues

By:  Diane Benjamin The City of Bloomington can’t legally withhold documents that existed before the State Police announced their investigation, but they are trying to keep me from finding the truth anyway.  Did they really think I wouldn’t write about it? I filed a FOIA request for the all General Ledger Accounts pertaining to Sister […]

Ethics!

By:  Diane Benjamin Illinois Law requires every level of government adopt an Ethics Ordinance.  Even though it has been brought to Bloomington’s attention, they do not have an ethic ordinance on their website.  When asked who the Ethics Officer is – I believe we were told David Hales.  I did find this on the City […]

Is Sister Cities a Tax scam?

By:  Diane Benjamin From the bottom of the Sister Cities website:   http://www.bnsistercities.org/ When I FOIA’d the names of people who went on the trip, I got a list of names.  Hand written on the sheet is: Since I didn’t FOIA donations, I wondered why they would give me that list and why these people would […]

FOIA Failures

By:  Diane Benjamin No, transparency doesn’t exist in Bloomington! This FOIA request was made on July 31st.  I did receive the information on the dinner at Lucca Grill, I have not received the names of the people money was paid to IACE Travel for.  A second request on August 10th and a third request on […]

Do laws matter?

By:  Diane Benjamin I’m not celebrating the State Police investigating Tari Renner’s use of a City PCard for a personal purchase.  Being investigated is not the same as being prosecuted.  We will find out if laws still matter, sometimes it’s hard to tell.  Illinois Constitution: Government officials and employees aren’t allowed to read the law […]

Visual: Eating at your expense

By:  Diane Benjamin From last Monday night at City Hall: The Bloomington City Council wouldn’t need to meet at 5:00 pm if they weren’t trying to control every aspect of your life.  Meetings would be a lot shorter! You wouldn’t need to feed them either.  Monday was pizza, I wonder where the leftovers went?  Does […]

More Media fail

By:  Diane Benjamin Tari Renner has been making the media tour to justify the use of government funds on his girlfriend’s plane ticket to Japan. It’s amazing how WJBC and WGLT can let Renner spout anything and never challenge his statements. This morning Tari was on WJBC.  He claimed his girlfriend’s ticket was bought as […]

Preston investigated, but not Renner?

By:  Diane Benjamin Proving once again the law is a weapon in the hands of those in power who choose to use it: Jason Chambers referred the Town of Normal’s case against Scott Preston for expense reports he turned in, and Normal paid – to  the Appellate Prosecutors Office. Normal failed to enforce policies of turning […]

More Lies Tari?

By:  Diane Benjamin Since last night Tari called comments made by citizens about the Japan trip lies, I have no problem calling his statement lies. Just hit play below to hear him. First, he claims the Chief Legal Officer said he did nothing wrong.  Who is the Chief Legal Officer Tari?  Jeff Jurgens or somebody […]

Ideology means no choices for you

By:  Diane Benjamin The Bloomington City Council spent almost an hour discussing why citizens shouldn’t be allowed to choose the lowest cost electricity under Municipal Aggregation.  The final vote was 7-2 with Aldermen Sage and Mathy against limiting your rights.  The rest of the Council voted with one finger pointed directly at you. Even with […]

Bloomington: Your Mayor

By:  Diane Benjamin If you question Mayor Renner or publicly disagree with his actions on any subject – YOU will get attacked. I’m sure you remember when he attacked me:  https://blnnews.com/2015/02/11/tari-attacks-me-again-not-in-our-town/ I talked to a reporter tonight who told me about another vile email Tari sent a couple of weeks ago, but he didn’t know […]

More CONTROL

By:  Diane Benjamin Of course this is on the Consent Agenda – No discussion required! The Council is being asked to codify discrimination in the City Code.  It will be legal to prosecute anyone that isn’t a non-profit and government-funded. In other words, Connect Transit can have electronic signs, but only them.  Nobody else can […]

How many LIES will you tolerate?

By:  Diane Benjamin “Resistance to tyrants is obedience to God.”  –Thomas Jefferson “Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is argument of tyrants. It is the creed of slaves.”  –William Pitt in the House of Commons November 18, 1783 Just this year the City of Bloomington created a Transportation Committee, a […]

More Travel-did Margot ride? pay it?

By:  Diane Benjamin If you’ve been following the Japan Sister Cities saga, you already know about this expense: That was only a partial payment! That’s a total of $5,365.00.  Tari hasn’t said a word about this one, but at the Open House last night he and Margot floated that she should get a refund because […]

MONDAY: Come support the POLICE!

The first Bloomington City Council meeting starts at 5:00  http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=14456 Public comment will start a little after 5:00. The Council is then holding a secret meeting (Executive Session), so come outside and show your support for the Bloomington police: Link to Facebook Event

Weekend fun – Sort of

Welcome Tyranny to Bloomington

By:  Diane Benjamin Normal came really close to ending their tyranny when Chris Koos was almost defeated in April.  Renner didn’t get Modified Wards, but now that he’s reelected, nothing is going to stand in his way.  The Council certainly won’t – gee they approved his girlfriend’s ticket to Japan! No, nobody is looking out […]

UPDATE #2: Tari feeling heat?

Tari pretended he didn’t know Parker at the Open House.  David Parker:  Not a good way to start your career as a politician.  Do we have nothing but Democrat lies to look forward to until November of 2018? David Parker is running for the McLean County Board District 9 – no surprise:  As a Democrat! […]

Japan: What we don’t know

By:  Diane Benjamin We have no idea how many people went on the Japan trip.  We’ve heard numbers as low as 19 to over 35.  The names of those on this trip have not been produced under FOIA. We have no idea who paid and what the total cost was – other than the bills […]

Normal’s Tyranny

By:  Diane Benjamin The Town of Normal used to have their tax history on their website, they no longer do.  Luckily I copied it back in 2012:  https://blnnews.com/2012/05/30/normal-il-what-is-up-with-the-debt/   Rates were raised last Monday:  http://www.normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/2689 To translate their Greek: April 1, 2017 – $1.27 per 1,000 gal, plus $2.50 per month August 7, 2017 – […]

It’s still illegal Tari

By:  Diane Benjamin Not only illegal, it’s breaks the City PCard policy.  AND – more than one City employee (which Tari is) broke the policy. Note the date – May 12th.  From documents obtained by FOIA, this purchase was on the PCard held by Beth Oakley, Executive Assistant to somebody. She violated State law and […]

Maybe THIS is Tari’s excuse:

By:  Diane Benjamin The following Press Release was sent today by the City of Bloomington.  It has a couple of problems though! Who gave Tari the award? Did he award himself in his hotel room?  I predict a GLOWING Pantagraph article! ___________________________________________________ From: Nora Dukowitz <ndukowitz@cityblm.org>Date: Wed, Aug 9, 2017 at 11:19 AMSubject: Press Release: MAYOR RECEIVES […]

Maybe this is Tari’s defense:

By:  Diane Benjamin We know who the liar is Tari.  

Is this Renner’s defense?

By:  Diane Benjamin The conversation below is from Mayor Tari Renner Facebook page.  Krista Vogel Cardona was Renner’s campaign manager twice and the daughter of Steve Vogel.  John Kraft is one of the Edgar County Watchdogs.  The two names I redacted are private citizens and not the same person.  If you have a Facebook account, […]

UPDATED: MUST see video

By:  Diane Benjamin The media used to be the government watchdogs.  They no longer are.  It is now the job of citizens to hold their government accountable.  If we don’t, government will destroy us with taxes, regulations, and tyranny. The video below is from the Village of Wheeling.  One resident has taken it upon herself […]

Ready to be OUTRAGED?

By:  Diane Benjamin By now you know about Tari Renner putting his girlfriends Sister Cities flight on a City PCard.  Since the City extended the FOIA request for repayment, we don’t know if it was repaid or not.  The charge violates both State law and the City’s PCard policy.  Every other FOIA concerning this trip […]

More Bloomington stalling:

By:  Diane Benjamin Another extension by the City of Bloomington: Maybe the people the City hires just get paid a lot but aren’t very smart.  Maybe somebody at the City is micromanaging everything that happens – even following the law! Link to the FOIA law:  http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=85&ChapterID=2 There are no exceptions for redacting who got their […]

Looks like Renner/Ehrlich didn’t pay

By:  Diane Benjamin The following FOIA request was due today. How difficult is it to look up who paid the City?  Browse the General Ledger!   Remember, Tari claimed from Japan that I was lying and he was going to sue me for stating the truth – the City paid for his girlfriend’s ticket: Got […]

More that Stanford needs to explain

Originally posted on BLNNews:
By:  Diane Benjamin Fire Protection Districts are allowed to bill for services performed OUTSIDE of the districts.  It makes sense because the people served aren’t paying taxes to them.  The one catch is:  an ordinance is required to be passed and signed before the billings can be enforced. The Allin Township…

Failed Downtown Bloomington Assoc

By:  Diane Benjamin I hope Tari’s handpicked stacked Downtown Bloomington Committee is having fun dreaming of how to spend your money.  At the end of this month they will enlighten the public with ideas for getting people downtown.  Just because somebody builds it, it doesn’t mean anybody will come.  How many decades has taxpayer money […]

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