More proof: Budget Task Force was a joke

By:  Diane Benjamin See Bills and Payroll for Monday night – the LAST page:  http://www.cityblm.org/index.aspx?page=242&parent=9535 Remember how Bloomington was exposed in the Chicago Tribune paying massive penalties for allowing employees to SPIKE their pensions?  https://blnnews.com/2015/08/26/imrf-what-did-hales-know-and-when/ Remember when the Budget Task Force recommended fixing the problem but never did? Well, it just cost you another $122,735.32! […]

Gov employees too sweet to cut

By:  Diane Benjamin A long string of local golfers took the mic last night to sing the praises of the City employees managing the three Golf Course.  They urged the Council to pass the ordinance stating they were dropping any investigation of privatizing or selling any of the courses.  Yes, David Sage – the Budget […]

Yep, It was a joke

By:  Diane Benjamin Remember the Budget Task Force?  Remember how they were looking for places to cut? GOLF won’t be one of them.  On the Agenda for Monday night it this: There was a Citizen’s Summit.  A Budget Task Force.  Budget hearings. What did citizens get? A proposed budget that spends another $20,560,849, only an […]

Bloomington Work Session Woes

By:  Diane Benjamin Two Council meetings ago one person complemented the Council (during public comment) on how much better they are at working together.  Just hit play:  . The Council “working together” has gotten taxpayers huge deficit spending and a 1% Sales tax increase.  Expect more increases soon.  Is their job to “work together” or […]

Is Schmidt the new City Manager?

By:  Diane Benjamin Alderman Schmidt was given a few minutes at the end of last night’s meeting to discuss proposed cuts by the Budget Task Force.  She is the one who held her own meeting a few weeks ago and she drove the conversation last night. Tari put the Task Force together, but since the […]

Kill Park District talk NOW!

By:  Diane Benjamin Tari and I agree:  Forming a Park District is a terrible idea.  We even agree on why:  more government, more layers of government, more taxing bodies, more bureaucracy, and the inability to shift spending to other priorities if the budget is a separate government entity. The Budget Task Force put this on […]

Give them a trophy

By:  Diane Benjamin Budget Task Force report: 4 meeting focused on cuts 1 meeting focused on Revenue The ONLY cuts discussed were cuts that have been discussed for YEARS: Make schools pay for the Resource Officer Make downtown pay for the Police Hire Back program – David Hales was charged with doing this years ago.  […]

Taxes increases would be easier with TRUTH UPDATE

How did I forget?  5 years ago Tari, Bloomington wasn’t sending around $50,000 PER MONTH to Springfield for legal! By:  Diane Benjamin Renner on WJBC:  http://cdn.stationcaster.com/stations/wjbc/media/mpeg/Tari_Renner__Bloomington_mayor-1442412227.mp3 Renner on WGLT:  http://wglt.org/wireready/news/2015/09/01831_09-15Renner_070330.shtml Tari Renner:  We aren’t doing anything today that we weren’t doing 5 years ago.  Inflation is causing the need for tax increases. 5 years ago […]

Pantagraph covers for Tari again!

By:  Diane Benjamin Friday the bird-cage liner did their weekly version of Cheers and Jeers.  Make sure you are sitting down.  Ready? They CHEERED the Bloomington Budget Task Force! Evidently they have changed the paper to the local comedy show. Hey Editor – How about asking Tari Renner and David Hales why a group of […]

More taxes without facts

By:  Diane Benjamin Mayor Transparency wants his Budget Tax Force to report to the Council in September.  Gee Mayor, how are they putting everything on the table when nothing is on the table yet? The audited financial statements for the Coliseum, which will show a much bigger loss than previously reported, won’t be out until […]

4 Ward meeting: the report

By:  Diane Benjamin It’s funny how the bird-cage liner can count the crowd accurately when it’s liberals holding the meeting.  Yes, there were around 100 citizens at the BCPA last night for a Town Hall meeting held by Aldermen Sage, Buragas, Schmidt, and Black.  What their report omitted was at least 10% were of them […]

Why September?

By:  Diane Benjamin Tari’s Budget Task Force is going to report to the Council in September.  The Council will then be told to vote YES on whatever is proposed, most don’t realize the effort was a setup and will gladly comply. Other than raising the Sales Tax has to be approved by October 1 to […]

Joke: Budget Task Force

By:  Diane Benjamin Why is David Hales advising the Budget Task Force?  Didn’t he already have an opportunity to propose a budget that balanced, and he failed? Last night David Sage reported on how to squeeze taxpayers, sorry, I mean some of the recommendations of the committee. It’s more than obvious that Sage and Hales […]

Proof: Pantagraph Corrupt

By:  Diane Benjamin Steve Vogel doesn’t think he needs to disclose EVERY TIME he writes about the City of Bloomington that he is Renner’s Campaign Daddy.  His DAUGHTER ran 2 campaigns for Renner, but I’m positive he isn’t the slightest bit corrupted by his baby’s allegiances.  Just like Lisa Madigan doesn’t take any direction on […]

Tari’s Tragic Tyranny

By:  Diane Benjamin Either: In September, the Bloomington City Council will pass what Renner’s hand-picked Budget Task Force says needs to done (tax increases) Or: The entire exercise was another colossal wast of time if the Council rejects the recommendations. Wasting time is nothing new, think Paradigm and Giebelhausen.  How much staff time and legal […]

Taxes: How about the truth

By:  Diane Benjamin Bloomington is touting itself as having a lower Sales Tax rate than surrounding communities.  Of course, the reason for saying it is so they can raise theirs. Conveniently left out of the conversation is how many OTHER taxes each City has.  Let’s look at Champaign   http://ci.champaign.il.us/departments/finance/administrative-services-division/sales-tax-information-2/ 1% City Sales Tax 1.5% Home Rule […]

Wasting time and bucks

By:  Diane Benjamin Bloomington is going to raise your taxes.  They can’t find cuts because everything they do is so vital to the City.  Sure. Let’s talk time. How many staff hours were WASTED on Paradigm?  Former Alderman Rob Fazzini was working behind the scenes to put the deal together before he resigned.  The legal expenses alone […]

Budget Task Force: Places to look

By:  Diane Benjamin Expecting Renner’s hand-picked budget task force to find cuts is laughable, so here’s some help for them:  http://www.cityblm.org/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=8482 Salaries make up the largest part of the budget, so obviously every job needs to be assessed for its contribution to the City.  Adding personnel in Administration just means employees discovering vital work to do that […]

Bloomington: Developer gets freebies

By:  Diane Benjamin Attn:  Budget Task Force It is estimated McLean County Land Trust CC-1 currently owes the City  $562,194.78 in development fees. http://www.cityblm.org/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=6615  Page 167 COMMUNITY GROUPS/INTERESTED PERSONS CONTACTED: Snyder Development From the packet APRIL 14, 2014 The parties are working together in good faith to resolve their differences, and believe that they should […]

Hales: Bid golf, not Coliseum

By:  Diane Benjamin News flash:  Bloomington City Manager David Hales will put the sale of 3 golf courses out to bid if the budget task force recommends selling them.  He will seek “proposals from golf management companies with an established track record of success”. Meanwhile, 2 guys with a track record of failure are renegotiating […]

Well, Well, Well

By:  Diane Benjamin Remember yesterday’s story about Renner’s Budget Task Force?  https://blnnews.com/2015/07/08/bloomington-your-budget-task-force/ It turns out TWO (2) members don’t live in Bloomington! Deanna Frautschi lives at 2802 Hendrix Dr Bloomington IL.  The address is Bloomington, but it isn’t inside the City limits! This is the map of Ward 2:  http://www.cityblm.org/modules/showdocument.aspx?documentid=88  Look at the bottom right side […]

Bloomington: Your Budget Task Force

By:  Diane Benjamin City Manager David Hales isn’t capable of producing a balanced budget.  (Maybe he needs more than $200,000+ a year) The Council that you elected isn’t allowed to produce a balanced budget. Instead, Mayor Transparency hand-picked people he wanted to write a balanced budget:   http://www.cityblm.org/index.aspx?page=607  Position Name Term Exp    Member – Alderman Sage, David 9/30/2015 […]