Bloomington Budget vrs Normal

By: Diane Benjamin Making budget cuts isn’t a matter of cutting BIG things. It a myriad of small things that add up to big bucks. Here’s one example: This pic is from Normal’s budget: Normal will be handing over $109,250 to the CVB and $100,000 to the EDC. Why is Bloomington also giving the EDC […]

Bloomington tonight, tune in!

By: Diane Benjamin http://bloomingtonil.iqm2.com/Citizens/FileOpen.aspx?Type=1&ID=1152&Inline=True PDF page 10 is a proclamation declaring the first week of February: National Gun Violence Survivors’ Week. Has Mboka figured out Chicago has moved downstate? This is part of the declaration: That is probably true in Chicago where crimes aren’t prosecuted and kids are frequently shot and die because criminals with […]

Bloomington last night

By: Diane Benjamin Jamie Mathy reported Jenn Carrillo did not participate because she was experiencing internet problems. The City extended the Post Office lease in the Market Street parking garage for 18 months. Usually the lease is for 5 years, the City reduced it because they are planning to replace the garage. A contract was […]

Select info from the FOIA

By:  Diane Benjamin I finally made it through all 924 pages of the latest FOIA from Normal. Marc Tiritilli addressed the Council in person before they voted to continue electric aggregation.  Prior to that he sent this email: I suggest you compare Ameren prices to your bills if you haven’t opted-out.  Marc knows what he […]

Sports Complex?

By:  Diane Benjamin Why did the Sports Complex come back?  It looks like it’s being pushed by the Convention and Visitors Bureau:  (CVB) That email was included in one of the FOIA request I received. Another email shows the Normal City Manager’s response to a citizens opposed to the complex. I redacted he name: Meanwhile, […]

Why is BN Advantage a secret group?

By:  Diane Benjamin BN Advantage was formed in 2015.  Their mission is to get all the players together for collaboration on economic development strategy. The Bloomington Council approved the formation in October 2015, see this doc:  BN Advantage  I’m sure other area governments passed the same type resolution. Temporarily forget the fact that government doesn’t […]

More conspiring against citizens

By:  Diane Benjamin Follow-up to this story:  https://blnnews.com/2017/06/02/b-n-is-getting-the-delphi-treatment/ (It won’t be the only one!) The Bloomington Normal Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) is trying to get out of complying with the Open Meetings Act.  What does the Open Meetings Act say? OMA applies to all “public bodies”:  http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=84&ChapterID=2 I’d love to know what grounds they […]

B-N Sports Complex-Delphi

By:  Diane Benjamin The local area has THREE agencies coordinating economic development:  B-N Convention and Visitors Bureau, BN Advantage, and the Economic Development Council. There is MUCH more to this story – but not today. The Bloomington Normal Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) has another committee nobody has ever heard of: Sports Commission Board The Board […]

Untraceable spending – because they can

By:  Diane Benjamin Did you know Bloomington didn’t have an Economic Development person until 2012?  Are things better or worse now? From 2016 Total Compensation report:  http://www.cityblm.org/index.aspx?page=21&parent=5443 GRAMMERAUSTIN   ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT COORD Salary and benefits:  $94,583.89 . Where do some of your tax dollars go?  UN-accountable government agencies! The EDC (Economic Development Council) is getting $490,000 […]

Sorry! I know what it is now

By:  Diane Benjamin The Bloomington Normal Convention and Visitor’s Bureau gets a percent of the local Hotel/Motel Tax.  That is what the $41,666.67 is.  Evidently payments aren’t based on the actual tax collected per month, they got a check for the same amount in January. Maybe the total is adjusted to actual at the end […]