Normal – your Republicans aren’t

By: Diane Benjamin Your property taxes were raised last night with the consent of the two Republicans on the Normal Town Council. The rate was kept the same (for now) but with rising property values the Town will collect over $300,000 more than last year. The vote last night was sold as “statutory”, another vote […]

Uptown: We will take two please

By: Diane Benjamin Is Uptown a success? The successful buildings on the circle so far are government owned, Children’s Discovery Museum and Amtrak/Town offices. The third building still has an empty first floor and the taxpayers are renting the entire second floor for the Town. (Remember when the Council told Pam it was a high […]

More proof government never fixes problems

By: Diane Benjamin I’ve done numerous stories about Connect Transit buses destroying the infrastructure at the north west corner of Portillos. It is impossible for the huge buses to make that turn without running over the curb and sidewalk. That of course crushes the concrete. The corner has been fixed but the bus route was […]

Fun in Normal last night

By: Diane Benjamin Since the agenda was very slim last night it gave the Council time to stray where they normally don’t. The entire meeting was still less than an hour. At the October 18th meeting Chemberly Cummings proved she is the last person who should be teaching kids about government. She claimed the Trustees […]

Koos: Mr. Nord you are out of order

By: Diane Benjamin One more story from last Monday’s Normal Town Council meeting: If you missed the video of Chemberly Cummings’ stating Chris Koos can’t be questioned over appointments, watch it now: https://blnnews.com/2021/10/19/quick-hits-from-normal-last-night/ Cummings claims to have 8 Unit 5 students signed up for her “local government” class. The taxpayers of Normal are funding her […]

Normal Council Part 2

By: Diane Benjamin We still know very little about this expense: What we do know is Pam Reece can spend up to $25,000 without getting Council approval. Koos said Pam made this decision. The remediation was to a private residence, we don’t know the address. It was supposedly paid to fix a “code violation”, nobody […]

Quick hits from Normal last night

By: Diane Benjamin Below are a few notes from the Normal Town Council meeting. The bigger points will be in the second story today. The minutes from the last meeting where the activists were allowed to speak at the beginning of the meeting do not reflect Stan Nord made a motion to waive the rules. […]

Uptown TIF isn’t a success

By: Diane Benjamin The TIF reports for Normal have been posted on the Illinois Comptroller’s website. This is the report for the Uptown TIF: The Tax Increment Financing district was started in 2003, that means the majority of it is expiring in 2026. A small part was extended because development hasn’t occurred yet. The theory […]

Why the memorial was removed: Normal

By: Diane Benjamin The memorial tribute of Jelani Day was taken down because the Town of Normal is authoritarian. You can’t talk at a Council meeting until the end, whenever that happens to be, if what you want to say doesn’t pertain to the agenda. You could wait hours to get 3 minutes of their […]

One more on Normal! More Must Watch

By: Diane Benjamin I wonder if municipalities that hate the 1st Amendment right to address government will also call on the DOJ to declare citizens terrorists? Teacher unions and school boards have: https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/justice-department-addresses-violent-threats-against-school-officials-and-teachers It looks like Antifa doesn’t protest Marxists in government. For a meeting that only lasted slightly more than an hour, it was […]

Water bills are for water? Not in Normal!

By: Diane Benjamin Normally Chris Koos would have been banging Stan Nord out of order at the urging of Kevin McCarthy for doing what he did at Monday’s meeting. Koos didn’t Monday night. First the back story: At the previous meeting the Council (minus Stan) voted to spend $81,018 from the Water Enterprise Fund to […]

More clips, One MUST SEE

By: Diane Benjamin More videos from last night. Koos lost control early. The crowd did not respect his “business meeting”. Stan Nord made a motion to let them talk, Scott Preston seconded. Koos asked for head nods if the Council approves, I don’t see all the heads moving. Koos deemed it passed: The video below […]

Hot Mic shows the real Koos

By: Diane Benjamin h/t a reader Below is a short clip of a discussion before the meeting started last night. Chris Koos was not going to allow all the people who showed up to speak, he wanted Public Comment limited to 30 minutes. He also had no intention of letting them speak at the beginning […]

Normal Debt – VISUAL

By: Diane Benjamin So far I haven’t commented on the financial statements Normal released a few weeks ago. It is much easier to show you facts when the Illinois Comptroller gets around to posting the information in a way it is easier to understand. They finally did today. Debt: Look at the Original Issue Amount […]

Pam Reece owes Stan Nord an apology

By: Diane Benjamin I didn’t get around to posting this after the September 20th meeting. Since Normal will be meeting next week, Pam Reece can apologize to Stan Nord then. During comments at the end of the meeting Reece stated that Nord doesn’t agree with spending local motor fuel taxes on sidewalks. Here is her […]

Update: Is WGLT fake news or is Normal hiding the truth?

WGLT fixed the story, Normal annexed the property years ago. They don’t own it I’m leaning toward WGLT has the story wrong. No records indicate Normal owns the land. By: Diane Benjamin WGLT has a story about last night’s Normal Town Council meeting: https://www.wglt.org/local-news/2021-09-20/council-approves-loves-truck-stop-rv-park-on-30-acre-normal-site I didn’t make it past this paragraph: The Town of Normal […]

Normal: McCarthy is Koos’ toothless attack dog

By: Diane Benjamin Bloomington reports monthly to the Council and citizens on financial trends. We all can see exactly how much money has been collected for various taxes. Normal doesn’t! Normal dumps all tax revenue in the General Fund, including Local Motor Fuel Tax. Pay attention Kevin McCarthy, you obviously missed City Manager Pam Reece […]

Normal: Start towards the end

By: Diane Benjamin Normal held another meeting that lasted close to 2.75 hours. It will obviously take more than one story to cover it. I’m starting at the end. For the second time recently a citizen had to wait until the end of the meeting to offer Public Comment. This is because of Normal’s ridiculous […]

Normal again tries to silence people

By: Diane Benjamin h/t readers! The Town of Normal thinks it can silence free speech. Of course we knew that, they certainly don’t want to hear from citizens at Council meetings – unless you are going to take their side. Even if you take their side they might make you sit through hours of jibber […]

Trail East is Dead, now . . . .

By: Diane Benjamin Remember when the Normal Town Council told Pam Reece to make getting the Town out of the $36,000 a month lease for the 2nd story of 1 Uptown Circle a priority? Remember, that building would have never been built if the Town hadn’t agreed to rent an entire floor. Remember too the […]

Just a reminder:

McLean County property taxes – 2nd installment is due today. Not everyone who read The Chemberly Chronicles story watched her speech. It is vital that you do. It proves what she will be saying to the kids who sign up for her “government class”. Your tax dollars should not be used for her propaganda. Remember […]

Koos privileges

By: Diane Benjamin I actually heard this story from two readers. Chris Koos had a small hole in the street right in front of his driveway. He not only got the hole fixed, but the entire approach to his driveway was torn out. One reader told me the sidewalk in front of his house was […]

The Chemberly Chronicles

By: Diane Benjamin The three second clip I posted earlier this week of Chemberly Cummings throwing Martin Luther King under the bus is from the June 1, 2020 Council meeting. Her entire speech is below as well as Karyn Smith’s tearful response and Chris Koos stating we have to agree with Chemberly’s lived experience. No […]