Normal: Bait and Switch

By: Diane Benjamin While Bloomington is trying to pay cash for purchases instead of borrowing for capital expenses, Normal is running in the opposite direction. The Town of Normal stockpiles money in reserves, the applicable fund for this discussion is Vehicle and Equipment reserves. Obviously citizens in Normal are paying higher taxes so the Town […]

Purchasing: Bloomington vrs Normal

By: Diane Benjamin It’s really rare for Bloomington and Normal to buy the same thing so close together, but they just did. 7/26/2021 Bloomington: Normal tonight: Normal got $9000 for trading in a 2013 model, Bloomington is keeping a 2012 for backup. Both opted for gas engines instead of the more expensive diesel. Normal is […]

Normal’s Rivian water project

By: Diane Benjamin Extending water down East College, where Bloomington already has water lines, is out for bid. Normal has said over and over they are not going to use this line for the current Rivian plant that Bloomington already serves. See this pic from the bid pack: Also from the bid pack: So who […]

Normal’s obsession with One Normal Plaza is back

By: Diane Benjamin Usually some business comes before a Planning Commission if they need zoning changed for a specific business. This time it is the Normal staff requesting changes to zoning at One Normal Plaza. (More proof staff runs the Town, not the Council) Please note, government plans usurp capitalism and are destined to fail […]

Connect Transit Tosses your money

By: Diane Benjamin Don’t forget – there is no penalty for stupid government! Participants just move on to being stupid elsewhere 2019 Story: https://blnnews.com/2019/11/16/connect-transit-empty-buses-and-brains/ BEB is Battery Electric Buses March 4, 2021 story: https://blnnews.com/2021/03/04/pulling-the-plug-on-electric-buses/ Minneapolis abandoned electric buses for biodiesel Today: https://www.westernjournal.com/california-city-bought-electric-bus-company-promoted-white-house-now-considering-scrapping-expensive-fleet-nonstop-disasters/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=conservativetribune&utm_content=2021-07-23&utm_campaign=manualpost&fbclid=IwAR2w9iJr0t2OuY09oA-K4uRCSbifA1V7dKuZ2gLx4Y2JMY0kg8IsypGYh_A Another story from today: https://djhjmedia.com/steven/california-agency-looking-to-scrap-electric-buses-because-they-melt-catch-on-fire-and-costs-a-fortune-to-repair/ Quote: One Southern California city’s test run of […]

Normal’s FOIA problem

By: Diane Benjamin With the 2 recent firings from the Normal Police force, I wondered how many officers they have, I FOIA’d it. Results: That is a total of 75 officers. Problem: This list contains the officer fired June 15th, weeks before I filed the FOIA. A source tells me 4 additional officers no longer […]

Normal just can’t drop it!

By: Diane Benjamin Remember back to last year. Usually when a zoning change is requested it is because some entrepreneur wants to develop a property in a way it isn’t zoned for. That isn’t the case with One Normal Plaza. The Town is pushing allowing alcohol in the park. Yes, it is a park setting […]

Normal Trustees think they make policy. Ha Ha Ha

By: Diane Benjamin See this link: https://normal.org/bids.aspx?bidID=310 That link is the Town requesting bids. Remember when the “professional staff” picked an insurer because they liked the people – even though they were more expensive? https://blnnews.com/2021/05/12/normals-deception/ The “professional staff” threw that ol’ Buy Local philosophy out the window because they wanted to. Obviously that only applies […]

5 More things you need to know

By: Diane Benjamin 1) Tom DeVore is the bravest attorney in Illinois. He is the one that filed lawsuits against Pritzker’s illegal executive orders and won. Pritzker appealed and, since this is Illinois, the Supreme Court will hold out as long as possible before ruling. School Districts who claim they will lose funding if they […]

Is Normal Practicing Corporate Welfare?

By: Diane Benjamin Stan Nord was absent from the meeting last night so business only took about 15 minutes. One item that was passed with little discussion of actual facts was this: Staff has said they have no requests for extending the current sewer lines, so how does Crawford etc. know what to design? How […]

Nationwide gas prices, Illinois highest east of the Rockies

By: Diane Benjamin A friend was recently in the Quad Cities. The Iowa side had long lines at the pumps with Illinois plates. https://wirepoints.org/this-weekend-try-to-fill-your-gas-tank-anywhere-but-illinois-wirepoints/#respond Besides the State Sales Tax (6.25%) and State Motor Fuel Tax (.39) and Federal Gas Tax (.19), both Bloomington and Normal added .08 in local motor fuel taxes. https://www.newspapers.com/newspage/75413201/ Any surprise […]

Quit building what you can’t maintain!

By: Diane Benjamin Anybody think Normal’s underpass won’t flood? Will the structure be affected? Can trains safely be on top of it while standing water attacks the supports? Normal is going to build it anyway, they are way smarter than citizens. Ha, Ha, Ha. Koos and company want to make you pay for their vision. […]

Normal: Underpass over Sewers

By: Diane Benjamin Last weekend’s flooding proved local governments care more about building new than maintaining the infrastructure they already have. Anybody think the underpass Normal is desperate to build won’t flood? Think it won’t get icy in the winter? How will Amtrak passengers get to the other side if either happens? Probably the same […]

Normal’s Festivities last night

By: Diane Benjamin Must see Public Comments: Ron Ulmer at 3:51. Technical problems kept him from speaking at the last Council meeting so he gave his comment last night. He provided history of trains in Uptown and the obvious problems both the Town and railroad missed which cost taxpayers a lot of money. He asked […]

Normal’s fiction

By: Diane Benjamin More on the “Attack” Stan meeting last week. Attorney Brian Day spoke about 3 items-video below: 1) Day didn’t talk about Pam Reece’s procurement ethics, just Stan Nord’s. Day complained about Nord talking to local vendors AFTER the Town had already picked their favorite. Day left out the AFTER. The Town didn’t […]

Koos makes up his own rules

By: Diane Benjamin Refresh yourself on this story: https://blnnews.com/2021/06/16/stan-is-ethically-challenged-not-even-close-to-the-rest-of-normal/ I apologize to readers, this slipped my mind until I listened to Steve Suess’ show tonight. What is the Normal Public Comment policy? https://normal.org/854/Addressing-the-Council Citizens can only talk before the meeting if their comments are germane to the agenda. What was the agenda for the “attack” […]

Stan is ethically challenged? Not even close to the rest of Normal!

By: Diane Benjamin At the “attack” Stan meeting held Monday there was one public speaker who of course spoke glowingly about Pam Reece. Mayor Koos introduced him as Mr. Dullard. Video in this story: https://blnnews.com/2021/06/15/no-stan-you-arent-allowed-to-represent-voters/ So who is Mr. Dullard? From the Secretary of State’s website for searching Corporations: https://apps.ilsos.gov/corporatellc/CorporateLlcController Of course the head of […]

Update:  Six Things To Know

East Washington is getting water, sewer, and road.  $4.3 million, its going to be closed for quite awhile. By: Diane Benjamin 1) A citizens of Normal wants to know how many hours of staff time has been invested in the Underpass project. The Town of Normal claims they don’t keep track. At the last council […]

More Weeds!

By: Diane Benjamin Normal has a park off Constitution Trail called Rosa Parks. https://normal.org/1421/Rosa-Parks Below is what the flowerbed around the sign looks like: (h/t a reader) Those are all weeds, no flowers. Evidently Normal has money to build things, no money to maintain them. Government, either: quit constructing things in a way that requires […]

Zoom could be over

By: Diane Benjamin Chris Koos announced last night the next meeting could be back to in person. Zoom was way more fun except for public comments that couldn’t connect and the “Can you hear me?” chorus. Stan Nord pulled several items from the Omnibus agenda. One was the bills. Koos didn’t want to hear about […]

Underpass: Too late to stop it

By: Diane Benjamin Underpass work session: So far Normal has authorized spending $1.5 million on Phase 1 of the underpass. Chris Koos stated it can not be stopped now because of all the staff time, grants received, and other agencies involved that wouldn’t like Normal backing out now. It almost sounded like Wayne Aldrich (Director […]

Does your employer require you to use your cell phone?

By: Diane Benjamin Nobody reads the lengthy statements before software is downloaded, so you probably don’t know the below. Search: Mobile Device Management (MDM) Here’s one link: https://www.fortinet.com/resources/cyberglossary/mobile-device-management Mobile device management (MDM) is a type of security software that enables organizations to secure, monitor, manage, and enforce policies on employees’ mobile devices.  The core purpose […]

Riveting assemblage tonight in Normal?

By: Diane Benjamin Keep in mind many of Normal’s professional staff don’t live in Normal: https://blnnews.com/2020/12/14/guess-where-town-of-normal-employees-dont-live/ They have no reason to keep taxes low, make the roads drivable, or the water drinkable. The Council will be meeting at 5:15 to hear the status of the underpass project. Public opinion is immaterial. The fanciest properties will […]

Pam Reece: Health Czar

By: Diane Benjamin Chris Koos and Pam Reece signed a new Executive Order yesterday: https://www.normal.org/DocumentCenter/View/18831/Emergency-Order-21-001-Mask-Requirements-for-Public-Facilities-and-Employees If the Town attorney approved this order he is luckily his name isn’t on it. The title is Mask Requirements for Public Facilities and Employees. Obviously this applies to the public or an ordinance would not be needed to create […]

Two more things

By: Diane Benjamin 1) Ford’s F150 electric battery weighs 1800 pounds: https://jalopnik.com/ford-f-150-lightnings-battery-alone-weighs-as-much-as-a-1846925168?fbclid=IwAR08fR6H4a8DHjuzzpJ_sqKd6V4gazHoDIzIvDlw95456SYxszgtXlbBUkc That is the weight of a Volkswagen Beetle. Is Rivian’s the same? What happens to your car if you get hit by one of these tanks? 1800 pounds is just the battery. 2) The Pantagraph printed a picture of a Rivian employee charging […]

Town massage chair

By: Diane Benjamin The Town of Normal owns their very own massage chair. It is kept on the 3rd floor in the HR Department. The door is kept closed most of the time so people visiting HR don’t see it. I’m told users have a sign in before using it, the Town claims they don’t […]

Town of Normal: Your water is fine

By: Diane Benjamin Bloomington’s meeting last night will have to wait until tomorrow! Would you drink this? This is water from S. Coolidge in Normal, if the homeowner didn’t have a filter system this is what it would look like. The owner claims his neighbors are too afraid to complain. I hear that frequently from […]