$43 Million proposal is finally posted

By:  Diane Benjamin The book handed out to the Councils Monday night (and me) needed some corrections.  Maybe that’s the reason for the delay in posting the information. Normal has posted links to the presentation including video of the Monday meeting:    https://www.normal.org/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=1796 The local paper today called for a binding referendum.  They called the complex […]

Normal’s credit rating

By:  Diane Benjamin Moodys doesn’t have Normal at a AAA credit rating.  Their rating is still really good – AA1.  (Bloomington is AA2).  I can’t post link because an account needs to be created, you can create on for free at moodys.com Fitch rating services have a different story – Their rating for Normal is […]

Why was Renner’s cost more than Koos?

By:  Diane Benjamin From Bills and Payroll for 7/23/2018  http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=18360 PCard charge for Tari Renner –  Hotel only, US Conference of Mayors in Boston: Since Tari doesn’t have a PCard, it must have been booked with this card. 3 nights for Chris Koos including two charges at the hotel’s Champion Sports Bar was only $1209.99.    https://blnnews.com/2018/07/13/normal-we-must-entertain-and-more/ […]

Break time!

By:  Diane Benjamin The stories I’ve researched lately have been exhausting!  I need a break today, everything I’ve been researching is too depressing to ruin this lovely day. I’m taking time off to play outside! Meanwhile, the proposed sports complex must already be dead.  Chris Koos promised to have the presentation on Normal’s website yesterday, […]

Sports Complex MUST be Dead on Arrival

By:  Diane Benjamin Last night I actually asked the people around me if they heard the same things I did.  It was close to the end when Evan Eleff of Sports Facilities Advisory stated the complex will never pay for itself.  I asked him about it after the meeting ended.  He told me this is Parks […]

$ 43,585,074!

By:  Diane Benjamin That is the cost of building the proposed multi-sport complex. The best part is: It will NEVER pay for itself! If anybody supports this proposal they need mental health exams. More tomorrow!

Normal’s pork tonight

By:  Diane Benjamin Tonight – two meetings:  http://www.normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/3017 Don’t forget this one-the consult will present their findings on building a sports complex here: Misc money toss: Did you get your invite? This is only for printing: Normal allows pension spiking too: Unlike Bloomington where everything is a secret forever, Normal will be voting to release Executive […]

Normal: We must entertain! (and more)

By:  Diane Benjamin A reader asked me how much the Town of Normal contributes to the CornBellters, so I FOIA’d that information.  The Normal Cornbelters are another quasi-government organization with no transparency. Did you know for 20 years Normal is rebating all food and beverage taxes? I wonder if they audit sales?  How are cash […]

Update: Your wallet isn’t safe!

The Town of Normal still does not have this meeting properly posted.  They do have the 7:00 pm meeting posted.  Their lawyer needs to re-read the Open Meetings Act. By:  Diane Benjamin The notice below is not posted on the Town of Normal website under agendas or anywhere else I looked.  This was sent to […]

Recycling? How much ends up in the landfill?

By:  Diane Benjamin It would be nice if everything that could be recycled was.  Normal passed an ordinance mandating recycling for multi family housing.  The joke just might be on the kids who begged the Trustees to pass it.  Their rent will go up and all “recyclables” may end up in the landfill anyway.  Of […]

Chris Koos: Trump Derangement Syndrome

By:  Diane Benjamin At 9:26 last night Chris Koos posted this to Facebook: Why does the left always call us a democracy? We aren’t a democracy, that means mob rule.  Somebody wants your bike, the mob can vote to steal it from you.  That’s democracy. We are a Republic where we elect people to represent […]

Who is going to sue Normal?

By:  Diane Benjamin I’m betting the Town of Normal has a problem:  Discrimination! Is it legal to pass an ordinance that tells some people they HAVE to do something while others people don’t have to? That is exactly what the Normal Town Council did last night.  They have a legal department, did anybody check to […]

ISU must not teach capitalism

By:  Diane Benjamin The Normal Town Council meeting lasted more than 10 minutes last night!  It actually went over an hour because of the mandatory recycling ordinance. ISU kids showed up to demand their right to recycle.  Some called it a necessity, one claimed she had to drive 5-10 minutes to drop hers off and […]

Attacking the poor in Normal

By:  Diane Benjamin http://www.normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/2996 Tonight Normal may prove government destroys affordable housing. On the agenda is mandatory recycling for all multi-family housing.  Non-compliance fines are $100 per day!  Who MUST recycle: Attacking the poor is so easy when ideology rules over common sense.  Affordable housing will become even less affordable.  Where is the League of […]

More Jenn Carrillo

By: Diane Benjamin Jenn has new comments on Facebook this morning claiming she is completely non-violent.  Everything not in quotes are Jenn’s words.  This is non-violent? Below are the parts of the article Jenn didn’t quote.  “this man” is President Trump.    https://splinternews.com/this-is-just-the-beginning-1827099100 The U.S. had thousands of domestic bombings per year in the early 1970s. […]

Normal’s Monday bills

By:  Diane Benjamin Link to the Monday packet:  http://www.normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/2990 Another 10 minute meeting with not much on the agenda.  None of these items will get discussed. At the June 4th meeting $25,000 of Harmon Grants were approved – PDF page 27    http://www.normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/2973 Monday night they are paying the grants, but the total is $26,500 – PDF […]

Continuing “Right Fit” While Ignoring Needs

By:  Diane Benjamin Local governments in both Bloomington and Normal forgot a long time ago it isn’t their job to entertain you.  Raising taxes to pay for their folly costs everybody.  Want to know why Bloomington-Normal is becoming un-affordable?  Government tyranny!  They know better than you how to spend your money.  Worse, capitalism is murdered […]

Mayors traveling – at your expense

By:  Diane Benjamin According to this website:  https://www.statista.com/statistics/241695/number-of-us-cities-towns-villages-by-population-size/ there were 19,505 communities in the United States in 2015. 16,470 have a population under 10,000.  That leaves 3,035 larger cities. The US Conference of Mayors claims to represent 1,409 communities.  Since tiny cities don’t attend, 1409 of 3035 is only 46.4%.   http://mayorsagenda.com/about-us/ The next meeting is June […]

6 things you need to know

By:  Diane Benjamin 1) RC McBride asked to be excused from voting on payments to WGLT at last night’s Normal Council meeting since he is the General Manager.  He did vote on the Harmon Grants, 3 of which went to ISU, also his employer since WGLT is the campus NPR station. ISU, McBride, and the […]

$909.00 cookies

By:  Diane Benjamin The City of Bloomington and the Town of Normal gets by with throwing away your money because they are HOME RULE.  They both need their HOME RULE status revoked!  All it takes is a referendum. Yes, these are $909.00 cookies for City employees for St Patrick’s Day!         See […]

Normal giving away your money

By:  Diane Benjamin Running out of other people’s money has caused Normal to give away less of your money this year.  I wonder how many votes were bought through Harmon Grants? Last year’s list shows $50,000 was given away:  https://blnnews.com/2018/04/30/normal-harmon-grants/ This year’s list: The YWCA got more of your money, I’m betting they bought tickets for […]

RC McBride – an obvious conflict of interest

By:  Diane Benjamin This guy is the General Manager WGLT:   http://wglt.org/people/category/6 McBride is also on the Town of Normal Council:    http://www.normal.org/1135/Meet-the-Council If you don’t already see a conflict of interest with media helping to run government, I’m not done. Monday night the Normal Council is writing some checks to WGLT, an NPR station that […]

Like Debt?

By:  Diane Benjamin See this story from December 2, 2017   https://blnnews.com/2017/12/02/normal-tossing-money-yours/ Bond payments look like they are made twice a year. On the agenda for Monday night:  Interest payments of $1,541,388.73     http://www.normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/2973 In December the interest payments totaled $1,628,761.92 That’s a decrease of $87,373.19 Total debt is decreasing slowly – it was $92,320,992 at […]

600 jobs lost

By:  Diane Benjamin http://www.ides.illinois.gov/LMI/Local%20Area%20Unemployment%20Statistics%20LAUS/PressRelease/Local/Blm-Peoria_Apr.pdf Compared to April of 2017, April of 2018 saw 600 fewer jobs in Bloomington-Normal: Decatur gained 200 The State Farm bloodbath is just beginning, but here’s worse news: 200 more bureaucrats are employed? That’s bad news for your wallet and the future of Bloomington-Normal. 200 more people dreaming up how to […]

Pension Funding

By:  Diane Benjamin “One of the best-funded pension plans in the country is the nearly 90 percent funded Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund, which has long had the ability to enforce payments into the plan.” IMRF funding isn’t a problem.  That’s why pension spiking penalties were enacted, the fund couldn’t afford to pay pensions for employees […]

PRIVATE sports complex proposed

By:  Diane Benjamin When the consultants report is presented for a new sports complex here, it will be a glowing report of tax dollars and visitors flocking here with their kids.  It won’t mention the PRIVATE Pony League Fields that were built with no tax dollars but are thriving anyway. I wonder if the consultants […]

CIRBN: Another government waste?

By:  Diane Benjamin The Central Illinois Regional Broadband Network (CIRBN)  is part a project the State of Illinois applied for with the Federal government.  Illinois State University ended up with part of the grant which led to establishing CIRBN LLC.  Since CIRBN files non-profit tax returns, they should be incorporated as a non-profit on the […]

Normal’s short meeting Monday

By:  Diane Benjamin http://www.normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/2969 Besides the usual subsidies to Connect Transit, and the Economic Development Council, and payments to the National League of Cities and International City/County Management Assoc, Rivian got their grounds taken care of by you: Other business: PDF page 77 and following: Coming to Uptown as requested by Stave (I’ve never heard […]

Where “Welcoming Ordinances” are leading

By:  Diane Benjamin We have a blueprint for the future.  Just look at Sanctuary State California. The Trust Act made Illinois a sanctuary state, Chicago declared itself a sanctuary city.  The “Welcoming Ordinance” Normal passed is just short of that, but the local open borders activists aren’t going to stop there.  Progressives never stop. Did […]

The cost of “Full Service” in Normal

By:  Diane Benjamin The numbers below are from the Illinois Comptroller’s website:    http://warehouse.illinoiscomptroller.com/ Normal’s budget has increased 33% in 6 years.  5.5% per year is much higher than the inflation rate.  Last year Normal spent almost $36 million more than it did in 2012. Where is it?  Roads? Population is estimated at 54,264.  That spending […]

No money in it: Recycling

By:  Diane Benjamin If money could be made from recycling, Normal wouldn’t have stopping funding drop off locations.. Midwest Fiber wouldn’t let the drop off boxes get stuffed to capacity creating a mess when people just leave the junk outside the bins. I have been dropping of recycling for years behind Walmart in Normal.  These […]

Found on Social Media:

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Wrong side of the tracks

By:  Diane Benjamin In March I posted a story concerning the “luxury” apartments in the new building on Uptown Circle:     https://blnnews.com/2018/03/17/more-on-uptown-circle/ At that time Zillow showed 16 apartments for rent.  It now shows 14 ranging from $1650 and month to $4200:     https://www.zillow.com/b/1-uptown-circle-normal-il-9J8XNH/ Public Comment on items other than the Welcoming Ordinance was at […]

Participation Trophy

By:  Diane Benjamin Normal passed the “Welcoming Ordinance” last night that does nothing.  Scott Preston and Jeff Fritzen voted against it.  The supporters declared victory anyway, they got the Town to kneel before them even if only for one night.  The radical pep rally lasted for over 3 hours so everyone who wanted to speak […]

When Radicals run your Town:

By:  Diane Benjamin If Normal passes the Welcoming Ordinance tonight, they are empowering leftist radicals. Bloomington and Normal are chasing people out of town by giving into radicals.  It started with citizens second guessing the actions of the police.  It continues with laws ignored via a Welcoming Ordinance.  Now they think they should pick the next […]

UPDATE: Normal: Don’t do it!

  It passed with 2 no votes by Scott Preston and Jeff Fritzen.  Video you won’t want to miss tomorrow! By:  Diane Benjamin Monday night Normal will consider a “Welcoming Ordinance” for people who have no legal right to be in this country. We pass laws to protect law breakers? We pass law for specific […]

No bid, Uptown TIF, Welcoming Ordinance

By:  Diane Benjamin Monday night Normal is spending $ 1,271,428 on 4 garbage trucks and waiving the bids.  How do they know the cost is competitive without bids: They will get $420,000 for the four trucks they are trading in. The Welcoming Ordinance does nothing: The open border crowd wanted an ordinance making it illegal for […]

The Rumors are:

By:  Diane Benjamin Just rumors – some based in a lot of facts Bloomington’s Water department director resigned – Bob Yehl OSHA regulations were violated at Lake Bloomington yesterday as City employees destroyed a boat dock, If you are a buying a house at Lake Bloomington that has a boat dock, get a copy of […]

Normal’s Pension Problem (and Bloomington)

By:  Diane Benjamin The Town of Normal has to pay into three pension funds:  IMRF, Police, and Fire. The funding for IMRF isn’t horrible, Police and Fire are.  What does that say about who the Town management and Council respect and who they don’t? I’m sure you remember property taxes being raised year after year […]

Update: Normal to codify: Laws don’t matter

The resident radical attempting to throw Karen Schmidt off the Bloomington Council will be leading the charge in Normal: By:  Diane Benjamin According to WGLT, Normal will consider a “Welcoming Ordinance” Monday night:    http://wglt.org/post/normal-consider-welcoming-ordinance-monday Considering RC McBride is WGLT’s General Manager and he’s on the Normal Town Council, they would know.  It must be nice […]

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