Koos, Council: Shut up citizens!

By:  Diane Benjamin Last night the Normal Town Council defied the Attorney General’s letter and made only minor changes to their Public Comment Policy.  They relied on the opinion of their City Attorney Brian Day who formerly worked for the Illinois Municipal League. First, you need to understand what the IML is.  See this story:  […]

WJBC: ISU/Central Catholic Facts matter

By:  Diane Benjamin Yesterday WJBC read the Melanie Spellmeyer-ISU-Central Catholic update story on my website.  They read the original story too, but never reported on it.  The story only became important to them when Dan Brady got involved.  It probably helped that his funeral home advertises on WJBC. See their story here:  HERE Totally lost […]

Remember Melanie Spellmeyer, ISU, and Central Catholic?

By:  Diane Benjamin When the Central Catholic girls were playing basketball at Red Bird Arena for the State Championship, an ISU employee violated their fans free speech rights.  She told them they were not allowed to wear anything related to the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES. In case you missed the story, see it here:  […]

UPDATE: What’s the penalty for HATE speech?

No one at ISU has responded to my requests for a comment.  They are hoping this blows over if they pretend nothing happened. By:  Diane Benjamin Saturday – Redbird Arena, Illinois State University – Central Catholic High School girls basketball team is playing for the State Championship. Many Central kids arrived at the game wearing […]

No Free Lunches except for . .

Diane Benjamin Bills and Payroll for Monday night: For almost 4 years Tari Renner spouts “There are no free lunches”.  Unless your name is Tari Renner:  Page 107  http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=12212 I’m sure these were strictly business, especially the ones with nobody listed but Tari! Was the public invited and I missed it? My personal favorite: PCard […]

Victory! ISU’s Public Comment Policy

By:  Diane Benjamin Illinois State University’s Public Comment policy used to be even worse than the Town of Normal.  Not any more! See the new policy here:  http://illinoisstate.edu/trustees/comment.php The policy is: Sign up before the meeting Public Comment lasts up to 30 minutes Speakers get 5 minutes There is no 45 day rule before you […]

Bats and Wind Farms

By:  Diane Benjamin I wonder how this article made it in the latest magazine printed by Illinois State University! ISU is a big pusher of wind energy, so this article is out-of-place.  Somehow it didn’t make the on-line version of the magazine or I would have linked to it. If you are Facebook friends with […]

WGLT: Your local tax dollars

By:  Diane Benjamin UPDATE to this story:  https://blnnews.com/2017/01/23/redistributing-your-wealth/ Since WGLT is National Public Radio, your federal tax dollars already fund them.  They aren’t allowed to sell advertising, all they can do is “underwritten by” non-specific ads. That doesn’t keep your local tax dollars from ending up in their pocket though.  I received this information under […]

ISU’s Illegal Public Comment policy

By:  Diane Benjamin Complying with the law doesn’t matter when citizens “interfere” with government’s ability to do whatever they want! Normal is the perfect example.  The entire Council, Mayor, and City Manager are pretending they asked the Attorney General to rule on their policy.  They didn’t.  TWO citizens want Lisa Madigan’s Public Access office to […]

ISU avoids a lawsuit

By:  Diane Benjamin First ISU refused to give me a document I requested by FOIA claiming it was exempt. See this story Next they gave me the document but redacted the part I wanted:  See THIS story Some light finally went on at ISU and they decided the document in the story above is NOT exempt […]

ISU is embarrassing . . NIOT?

By:  Diane Benjamin Martin Luther King Day was last Monday, but ISU won’t be holding their annual dinner until Friday.  Maybe even ISU knows this event should not be held on MLK Day since King would never approve of the speakers they bring in. King was a minister.  King was a Republican.  King knew the […]

More on ISU and RC McBride

By:  Diane Benjamin Update to this story:  https://blnnews.com/2017/01/11/next-lawsuit-isu/ I received the email below concerning the ISU denial of the required waiver to hire RC McBride as the General Manager of WGLT: Attached to this email was: The previous story spelled out that waivers can only be issued in extraordinary circumstances – note ISU redacted those […]

Next Lawsuit: ISU

See update here:  https://blnnews.com/2017/01/13/more-on-isu-and-rc-mcbride/ By:  Diane Benjamin I filed the following Freedom of Information request with ISU – their answer is included. They included the obligatory you have to right to contact the Attorney General . .  .: . Since we all know asking Lisa Madigan to do her job is a complete waste of […]

BEC-The Saga continues

By:  Diane Benjamin Below is the video shot by John Kraft of Edgar County Watchdogs at the meeting to hear the protest to Renner’s petitions.  John kept the video running after the meeting was recessed.  At 6:48 Jason Chambers, State’s Attorney, announced he was not going to intervene because his office would be responsible for […]

Normal: Somebody should have watched spending

By:  Diane Benjamin From expenditures for approval Monday night:  http://normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/2241 Economic development is subsided Buy Local is for us, not necessarily government (refer to link above) Free or cheap entertainment really isn’t . . .

Part 2: The End of Bloomington/Normal as We Know IT

See Part 1 here:  https://blnnews.com/2016/10/09/the-end-of-bloomingtonnormal-as-we-know-it/ Part 2 by: Lawrence Butts Illinois State University . The bubble that higher education is currently riding high on is about to burst. The first question that will be asked is “ISU is doing great, they fill their enrollment every year – how are they in trouble?”  Yes, for the […]

The End of Bloomington/Normal as We Know IT

Part 1 by Lawrence Butts Introduction . I came to this town in 1970.  As you might imagine, there have been many changes since that time.  Some of these changes have been for the better and some have been for the worse.  This is a much larger community with more to do and with better […]

Erik Rankin: WE AGREE!

By:  Diane Benjamin Scared? We can agree on some things!  Erik wrote a response on the ISU website to this question: His answer is excellent.  Read it for yourself here:  https://news.illinoisstate.edu/2016/09/ask-a-redbird-scholar-how-did-we-end-up-with-2-unpopular-presidential-candidates/   Besides being assistant to the chair and undergraduate advisor, Department of Politics and Government, Erik is a member of  the McLean County Board […]

The truth about 97% agree

By:  Diane Benjamin Lisa Madigan signed up to start prosecuting corporations who deny climate change.  That’s not surprising since she rarely prosecutes corrupt politicians and instead prosecutes businesses.  She needs to see the video below, but most likely facts don’t matter.  They don’t to some ISU professors! What exactly do 97% of climate change scientist […]

The Hoax takes a new low!

By:  Diane Benjamin The climate change believers were unleashed to spew propaganda in the bird-cage liner today.  An editorial by two ISU professors called people who haven’t swallowed the communist green kool-aid part of the “cult of ignorance”. These clowns admit to living in a bubble.   I agree and it’s funded by taxpayers and […]

Your taxes import labor: ISU, U of I

By:  Diane Benjamin My ancestors came to America penniless and legally – through Ellis Island.  Nobody gave them welfare or paid their way.  They came here to be Americans, nothing hyphenated.  They learned English, just like millions of other legal immigrants.  E pluribus unum  (Out of many one) The push now is for Diversity.  Think […]

ISU buys foreign labor

By:  Diane Benjamin Illinois State University is paying all the bills to import employees from other countries. See this contract Illinois State University made with one law firm:  Masuda, Funai, Eifert & Mitchell FY14-1 It’s for 1 year, $70,000, and renewable for up to 9 years.  Since the contract doesn’t say what this firm is […]

ISU: Skirting the law?

By:  Diane Benjamin Below are three contracts between ISU and the same Law Firm.  All cover the same time period.  All are for services not to exceed $19,999.  The only difference is the scope of the work to be performed. See this link for 2016 Expenditures Guidelines:  http://purchasing.illinoisstate.edu/  Yes, the contracts are from 2014 – […]

ISU, Voting, and stupid Media

By:  Diane Benjamin Same day voter registration was a stupid law and, contrary to what Democrats think, it’s not government’s job to make it work without any attempt to DUMP it.  Stupid laws with unintended consequences can’t be fixed.  It was never about increasing voting, it’s about getting uniformed to the polls.  Think ISU. So […]

ISU pay policies you aren’t supposed to know

By:  Diane Benjamin This might be a State-wide policy for hourly employees.  I’m positive it happens at ISU.  I’ve heard prisons do the same thing, readers can tell me where else it happens.  I’ve got the smartest readers on the planet (and no time to research further). The easiest way to describe this is with […]

ISU: nepotism

By:  Diane Benjamin A reader sent a Freedom of Information request to ISU for student employees in the offices listed below. This email and document were received from the FOIA officer at ISU: 3 of the students are related to the FOIA officer. Children of ISU employees get 1/2 off tuition too. Only one job […]

More non-profit fun: ISU

By:  Diane Benjamin If you are an ISU graduate I’m sure you’ve received fundraising calls from the ISU Foundation. As a non-profit organization, they have to file public tax forms.  See them here:  http://nccsweb.urban.org/communityplatform/nccs/organization/profile/id/376025713/popup/1 I’ve only looked at the first one listed-2014.   Compensation must be disclosed – see the page below (Page 8 of the […]

Connect Transit – who is paying

By:  Diane Benjamin I filed Freedom of Information requests with ISU, Heartland, and Connect Transit based on the previous post:  https://blnnews.com/2015/11/12/connect-transit-requires-photo-id/ I appreciate ISU responding in ONE day, Heartland and Connect Transit took the 5 days permitted to respond. See the current ISU contract with Connect Transit here:  ISU-Connect Transit FY16 ISU is paying Connect […]

Thursday: Socialism at ISU UPDATE

By:  Diane Benjamin This Thursday could be a monumental day across the country!  There is a Million Student March – ISU has a chapter. The local organizer is Zachary Braun, an employee at Walgreens and an ISU student.  His LinkedIn account describes him as: Team Leader at Progressive Democrats of America What are they marching […]

New UPDATE concerning ISU!

By:  Diane Benjamin If you are totally unfamiliar with the saga between ISU and my church, see this story:  https://blnnews.com/2015/10/21/isu-destroying-free/ Last Sunday church leadership sent an email to ISU terminating the relationship. The church has now received an apology from an assistant to the President.  But it gets better! Our Pastor talked with some of […]

Rauner is right – here’s proof

By:  Diane Benjamin Bloomington residents: Have you looked at the address you send water payments to? If you have the misfortune of taking a trip in an ambulance, and get billed for it – where does that payment go? Remember yesterday’s story about ISU?  https://blnnews.com/2015/10/21/isu-destroying-free/ What do they all have in common?  Illinois discourages business! […]


Don’t miss the latest update:  https://blnnews.com/2015/10/28/new-update-concerning-isu/ My church Council voted to terminate any further action with ISU yesterday.  We feel horrible for the little kids that could be helped, but government lawyers and churches are not a good combination. By:  Diane Benjamin This is another lesson in limited government!  Hopefully readers have figured out Limited […]

ISU: Church & State?

By:  Diane Benjamin ISU has a long history of inviting leftist activists to campus.  If an activist on the right has been invited, I missed it.  Here is the latest:  https://stories.illinoisstate.edu/university/media-relations/report/ferguson-civil-rights-activist-to-deliver-hibberts-r-roberts-lecture-october-15/ Rev. Osagyefo Uhuru Sekou is a minister.  Is he going to leave his version of religion out of his speech?  Would Franklin Graham be […]

ISU: Training future whats?

By:  Diane Benjamin I had hopes that only IWU was training kids to be offended:  https://blnnews.com/2015/09/01/iwu-teaching-kids-to-be-offended/ Bureaucrats must be lacking work, ISU has joined the ‘microaggressions” cause to justify keeping their jobs.  If any problems were solved they would be out of a job – so invent more injustice that needs fixing.  Remember, IWU is […]

American tragedy

By:  Diane Benjamin Yesterday I met a 24 year old very recent ISU grad.  She is now $114,000 in debt and can’t find a job in her field.  The friends she graduated with can’t find a job in their field either.  She works a job that doesn’t require a college degree.  She may never be […]

ISU, NORMAL, and college kids

By:  Diane Benjamin Is ISU a Police State for students?  I’ve heard stories of dorm rooms open in Watterson and a cop pops his head in to look for contraband.  Actions like that don’t encourage good relations between  students and the police. I decided to do a Freedom of Information request for the fines assessed […]

ISU Wedding-Gate Part 2

by:  Diane Benjamin I received the email below about the previous ISU story. (https://blnnews.com/2014/07/15/isu-how-do-they-get-by-with-this/) The writer gave me permission to print it – without any identifying information.   I think it shows there are problems at ISU. Diane,Kudos to the article on the wedding fiasco with ISU athletics. Some things to consider for follow-up:  who […]

ISU finally does something right

by:  Diane Benjamin Fired horticulturist Patrick Murphy HAS been rehired by ISU.  It is not the same job he had, but he’s happy with it. Murphy was fired after an altercation occurred with former College President Tim Flanagan.  Flanagan was later charged with disorderly conduct. I know a lot more details, but I’m going to protect the […]

Think ISU will do the right thing? WRONG

by:  Diane Benjamin Because of disgraced former President Tim Flanagan, Patrick Murphy lost his job at ISU.  I have talked to people who worked with him and worked for him.  Patrick is one of the good guys and ISU is throwing him away.  Patrick has a degree in horticulture from ISU.  Since Flanagan was arrested […]

ISU students – support for fired employee

by:  Diane Benjamin See this previous post:  https://blnnews.com/2014/04/04/isu-students-protest-for-fired-employee-not-flanagan/ The students are still on the Quad.  Stop by a sign a petition!

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