Huge Transparency problem in Bloomington

By: Diane Benjamin Did you know some Bloomington officials SEARCH on this website because it is impossible to find what you are looking for on the City of Bloomington website? Instead of concentrating on function, the City is changing the look of the Bloomington website and providing LESS vital information. Example: Details from this […]

Did Julie Emig violate City Code ethics?

By: Diane Benjamin At Monday’s Bloomington Council meeting approving money for the Ecology Action Center was on the Consent Agent. Everything on it was passed with one unanimously vote including this to the Ecology Action Center: One problem – h/t a reader: Julie Emig is listed on the Ecology Action Center website as a […]

Bloomington: Mboka doesn’t like change

By: Diane Benjamin Tari Renner stacked all the Board and Commission. Mboka continues to just reappoint the same people. No Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Mboka? This item shouldn’t be on the Consent Agenda, it should be pulled for further discussion. Does the City want to risk an abandoned property if the owners can’t use […]

Bloomington Roads History and the American Rescue Plan money

By: Diane Benjamin I probably have at least 100 stories since 2012 on road conditions. Tari Renner ran for office promising to fix them – twice. In 2012 the City passed an Action Plan that included “smooth rides on quality well-maintained street”. In late 2013 or early 2014 the City borrowed $10,000,000 for […]

2 more things from Bloomington last night

By: Diane Benjamin Mboka should be ashamed of himself for re-appointments made last night. Instead interviewing candidates that I know applied to fill expiring terms, he re-appointed Tari Renner’s picks. It’s a sad day for Bloomington when people who haven’t been involved aren’t allowed to even meet with the mayor. How about some people that […]

Application Link for Bloomington Ward 1 vacancy

By: Diane Benjamin Click on this link for details and a link to the application: If your excuse for not applying is you are too busy, I’m sure people that aren’t too busy to serve will apply. Of course being represented by another progressive with an agenda won’t get your roads fixed.

Part 1 of Bloomington last night

By: Diane Benjamin One Public Comment was exceptional last night. Gary Lambert speaks pretty often, always showing lots of common sense. Gary responded to something Mayor Mboka wrote in the Pantagraph wanting the State to quite keeping more of the local tax money than they used to. Gary threw that letter back in his face […]

Illinois has the highest State and Local Taxes!

By: Diane Benjamin WalletHub is out with a new report as of 3/7/2022. It shows Illinois is #1 with an effective State and Local tax rate of 15.01%. The lowest overall tax state is Alaska – 5.84%. Click below and page down. Keep clicking down and you will see this: This proves why people […]

Bloomington tonight: TRUTH!

By: Diane Benjamin PDF page 114: Are you ready for electricity rates to double? How are your natural gas bills going? Government interference in the markets because of PRETEND Climate Change has only 1 goal: bankrupt you: When nuclear power plants can’t be built which would produce cheaper electricity than solar panels and wind […]

Bloomington: You deserve reports!

By: Diane Benjamin’ I think the Grossinger Motors naming rights expire next year. It was a 5 year agreement in June of 2017. Expect something really original like Bloomington Arena to replace it. Of course that means new signage. Maybe the City can just paint the name on the building instead (don’t hold your breath). […]

And now for some comedy:

By: Diane Benjamin At the last Normal Town Council meeting Stan Nord asked about the One Voice trip – $1600 each for 3 people, not including air fare. He asked why the meetings can’t be done virtually. The three from Normal will be meeting in person with representatives from this area, other meetings will be […]

Bloomington Roads won’t be getting fixed

By: Diane Benjamin Bloomington is holding a Committee of the Whole meeting Monday night. The main item on the agenda is presenting the Capital budget for next fiscal year. Luckily it is posted in advance of the meeting here: The first page shows $7 million for asphalt and concrete, don’t get excited. Jump to […]

Likely short Bloomington meeting

By: Diane Benjamin The Council is still meeting on Zoom tonight. Packing people is on the agenda for tonight. Rezoning properties for multiple family homes: 1.63 acres located at 205 N. Prospect Road 12.32 acres located South of Enterprise Drive and West of Maple Hill Road .23 acres located South of Enterprise Drive and […]

What Departments are still at Bloomington’s Old City Hall?

By: Diane Benjamin Follow-up to this story: I received two responses to my original FOIA request wanting a list of what departments are at the Olive Street address, luckily both gave me the same information: Human Resources, Parks & Rec, Legal, Finance, IT Now you know everything I know! Other than the “Hub” and […]

Bloomington Budget

By: Diane Benjamin Unlike Normal who only spends one day presenting the budget, Bloomington is rolling their’s out. Last Monday was the first look. You can see see the slides on the video or at this link: See 1:28:40 on the video below. The City of Bloomington anticipates having a General Fund Balance of […]

No vote Bloomington?

By: Diane Benjamin I filed a FOIA request with Bloomington earlier in January. Since I watch every Council meeting and never heard a discussion about moving offices to the Government Center, I wondered how much it cost. I also wondered who was still working at the Old City Hall. I got the FOIA yesterday, I […]

BCPA’s astonishing lack of transparency

By: Diane Benjamin No BCPA event reports have been posted to the City website. Evidently I have to FOIA all of them. From this year’s budget: $1,700,000 of the Revenue is from Home Rule Sales Tax. Of that $840,206 goes to bond payments. See the complete BCPA presentation in the budget starting on PDF […]

BCPA losses keep mounting!

By: Diane Benjamin THREE more events – all losers: Report shows a profit of $142.68. With performance fee the loss is ($9,257.32). 192 attended Performance Fee: Report shows a loss of ($2,566.37), with performance fee the loss is ($33,066.37). 107 attended. Performance Fee: Report shows a profit of $3,944.97, with performance fee the loss is […]

Bloomington’s final meeting of the year

By: Diane Benjamin Council is meeting tonight at 6:00 to clear the rest of December for Christmas. None of the event reports at the BCPA have been posted on line: Evidently I have to FOIA all shows. Is the City afraid to tell citizens how much is lost to subsidized entertainment for the well […]

Library: $5,600,000 grant

By: Diane Benjamin At the Bloomington City Council meeting last night Jeanne Hamilton announced the State had given them a grant of over $5.6 million for the expansion. Of course, they won’t be using all of it to decrease the property tax increase. See 4:15. I might have lost track, but I counted 13 comments […]

Notice anything strange?

By: Diane Benjamin The below are screen shots from the Illinois Comptroller’s website. Bloomington data is from 4/30 of 2019, 2020, and 2021. Normal is from 3/31 of the same years. To see the data yourself, start here: From Select Report Name choose Annual Financial Report. Type the government unit you want to see. […]

Bloomington bucks

By: Diane Benjamin There were two public comments last night – both worth listening to. The radicals stayed home. See 1:40. The presentation by the Western Avenue Community Center starts at 11:00. This organization has been doing good work for 95 years on the west side. If you know nothing about them, the presentation is […]

The Comedy Club you don’t have to pay to see!

By: Diane Benjamin Attention Mayor Mboka: You don’t have a right to limit speech! Read up, Urbana just paid attorney’s fees to settle a lawsuit against them for doing exactly what you did last night: The comment Mboka objected to starts at 25:29. The lady could be called clueless, combative, obnoxious, and probably other […]

Letter to the Editor

Do you like Joe Biden?  You will love Karen Schmidt.   She is the Joe Biden of local politics.  When Ms Carillo moved out of her Ward I ventured out on a limb and said to someone you all know,  “Schmidt will get that seat.”   Of course we had to be drug through the silly charade […]

Road Trip to Ward 1

By: Diane Benjamin The neighborhood I went to yesterday is East of Evergreen Cemetery. It is adorable with many of the homes rehabbed which proves these residents care about their community. Many American flags were flying and lots of dogs where being walked. This community also had basements wrecked with raw sewage. It wasn’t a […]

New Rule for Bloomington Council:

By: Diane Benjamin FOURTY TWO Minutes of the meeting were wasted last night by Jeff Crabill attempting to make changes to the Welcoming America commission that will be established. His comments start at 43:10, the final vote wasn’t over until 1:25:30. The alderman meet in small groups with the City Manager, they know what is […]

What is Bloomington doing to get you downtown?

By: Diane Benjamin Bloomington has a calendar of events. Meetings are listed, but so are other events like Ice Cream at the Zoo and BCPA events. Missing are the Farmers Markets which actually do get people downtown on Saturday mornings. Also missing are Saturdays on the Square. In case you missed the 2013 extensive […]

Need some help Mboka?

I hear he’s still taking applications! By: Diane Benjamin H/T an associate who did some research on the Ward 6 candidates. Replacing Carrillo with a liked minded individual validates her vote buying with candy bars. Ward 6 didn’t know who they were voting for, she didn’t win with overwhelming support from the Ward. Since Democrat […]

Where to look for flooding help

By: Diane Benjamin I talked to a Bloomington resident yesterday who lives in an area that was severely affected by sewage spewing from drains in his basement. He is more interested in getting the problem fixed than financial help. I sent him the links below to information to share with his neighbors. Amazingly most citizens […]

Things you need to know:

By: Diane Benjamin 1) 2 more things from Bloomington Council meeting last Monday: Tim Gleason thinks he has to obey whatever Pritzker utters, of course getting money is involved. Gleason is going to require all fire department personnel to be vaccinated or test twice a week. No mention of people who have had COVID and […]

Final Bloomington last night

By: Diane Benjamin The meeting, including Township before Council, was over 3 hours. Your representatives look ridiculous behind masks. Normal doesn’t wear them at Council meetings, citizens deserve to see your faces! Of course the camera operator makes seeing faces difficult since it always isn’t in the right location. It was much more fun seeing […]