2 months of Connect Transit

By:  Diane Benjamin Since the Connect Transit Board failed to meet in March, at the April 28th meeting stats and financials for February and March were presented. April 2020 Board Meeting Packet Ridership was down since the college kids are mostly missing and businesses are closed: A graph like the above was not included in […]

Bloomington: Business as mostly usual

By:  Diane Benjamin Make sure you read to the bottom! http://bloomingtonil.iqm2.com/Citizens/FileOpen.aspx?Type=1&ID=1069&Inline=True Monday there is an ordinance up for approval to prorate refunds paid for video gaming licenses since these businesses are closed.  See PDF page 374.  Anybody else hold a license you can’t use?  Demand a refund too, equality supposedly matters. PDF page 372 has […]

Will Normal insult you tonight?

By:  Diane Benjamin WGLT wrote a story on March 6, 2020 stating:    wglt.org/wages-flat-mclean-county-lagging-rest-us-economy __________________________ Tonight’s Normal Town Council agenda: https://normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/3580 PDF page 71: Normal gives Cost of Living increases twice a year! Normal’s own propaganda arm – WGLT – stated wages are flat for most residents.  I saw a station selling gas for $1.88 […]

Normal: Pam Reece gets a retroactive raise!

By:  Diane Benjamin https://normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/3554 Monday night: Normal is paying the retro salary from last year’s budget: The population of Normal in 2019 was 54,742, a lot of the population are ISU students.  Even with ISU, Normal is a small town.  Bloomington’s City Manager earns $185,000 to run a larger city:  https://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=18082 Pam Reece’s contract expires […]

Bloomington travels – One Voice

By: Diane Benjamin Last year Tari Renner, Scott Black, Steve Rasmussen, and Diana Hauman got the free trip to DC for One Voice. Participants are normally elected officials or the City Manager/Assistant. This year Tari took his good buddy Justin Boyd. It looks like he replaced Amelia Buragas. Justin is the guy who posted the […]

Normal Travels (Again)

By:  Diane Benjamin Meeting docs:   http://www.normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/31937 In this story about Bloomington spending:    https://blnnews.com/2019/01/26/bloomington-bills-for-monday/ I listed 4 payments to the EDC for $1600 each.  It looks like Renner, Buragas, Mathy, and Tyus won the One Voice trip this year to Washington DC.  Buragas is leaving the Council April 30th and Tyus is the brand new Assistant […]

More from Bills and Payroll

By:  Diane Benjamin Bills and Payroll:    http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=17440 How did Alderman Hauman travel to One Voice in Washington DC for half the cost of Renner?   https://blnnews.com/2018/04/03/remember-the-one-voice-air-fare/ Is your full service City planning to throw parties?  Note it’s an Admin expense. The Springfield Lawyers are running out of budgeted funds, only $33,175 is left for April.  (see […]

Normal Monday: 10 minute meeting

By:  Diane Benjamin Monday 4/16:  http://www.normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/2946 Nothing that will take time to discuss is on the agenda.  They should discuss spending, but won’t.  Below are items I found interesting. The last time Lyle Sumek “consulted” with Normal the Town offered buyouts to employees.  What will be cut next? No expense was spared for a retirement dinner! […]

UPDATE: Remember the One Voice Air Fare?

I found this on the City website under Staff Responses:   http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=16236 By:  Diane Benjamin Update to this story:  https://blnnews.com/2018/03/23/bloomington-more-one-voice/ I FOIA’d the receipts to see why the cost was different for Black, Renner, and Rasmussen. Black drove himself to Chicago and flew from there to DC. Rasmussen left on a flight at 6:26 in the morning […]

Bloomington: More One Voice

By:  Diane Benjamin Bill and Payroll for Monday:  http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=16156 One Voice is an annual trip to Washington DC to beg for money.  Instead of meeting with Illinois representatives IN Illinois, taxpayers are forced to pay for this farce. Just for Bloomington – 4 people went to Washington DC.  Each was charged $1600 by Economic Development Council […]

Rent Payments and more Normal spending

By:  Diane Benjamin For approval Monday night:   http://www.normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/2919 See page 14 for what “buy local” looks like:  Amazon, Amazon, Amazon, Amazon, etc etc – plus some others. Eating your money: Looks like a few more employees got free bus rides, who got the shirts? More money to non-profits, 2nd of 3 payments for the bike sharing […]

One Voice – Wasting your money?

By:  Diane Benjamin You get to pay for a bunch of people to gravel in Washington DC for money.  It’s the annual One Voice trip which supposedly shows local officials standing united.  The trip is March 6th to the 8th. The EDC has finally released what they are going to beg for: Maybe we should […]

Bills for Monday night

By:  Diane Benjamin Somebody finally got around to posting the Bills and Payroll:    http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=15822 Diane Hauman is now going on the One Voice trip with Renner, Black, and Rasmussen ( https://blnnews.com/2018/01/26/more-government-travel-at-your-expense/) $1600 x 4 = $6,400 to visit the DC swamp instead of demanding in-district meetings with representatives.  That number is before other expenses.   Does […]

More government travel (at your expense)

By:  Diane Benjamin On January 19th I reported three payments of $1,600 to the Blooming-Normal Economic Development Council:    https://blnnews.com/2018/01/19/mondays-bills-foias-filed/ The three payments are for Tari Renner, Scott Black, and Steve Rasmussen to go on the One Voice trip to Washington DC:     https://www.bnbiz.org/programs/one-voice/ The County and the Town of Normal will probably also be […]

Normal’s agenda for Monday

By:  Diane Benjamin Agenda and Bills:   http://www.normal.org/ArchiveCenter/ViewFile/Item/2821 If you want to know why local government isn’t run for citizens, check out where they go to learn how to do their job. NLC is National League of Cities:  http://citysummit.nlc.org/schedule/schedule-by-day/ One Voice is the biggest fleece of all!  Big group goes to Washington DC to beg for money […]

Facts Mr. Koos

By:  Diane Benjamin This morning I attended the GOP breakfast because it featured the candidates for the Normal Town Council and Normal Township. Chris Koos made a comment about Uptown 2.0 I find hard to believe.  He claims there isn’t enough retail and office space in Uptown now, so Uptown 2.0 is to provide more. […]

One more One Voice DC pic

By:  Diane Benjamin 39 people from Bloomington-Normal went to DC to get money. THIRTY-NINE! 2016 Annual Washington D.C. Fly-In Details Date: Tuesday, March 1 – Thursday, March 3 Cost: $1550 per person. This includes hotel (2 nights), receptions, most cab fares and most meals. Hotel: Four Seasons Hotel Washington D.C. There are three projects we […]

Jan Traveling AND Eating at your expense

By:  Diane Benjamin January P-Card items:  See Bills and Payroll 2/22/16  http://www.cityblm.org/index.aspx?page=242&parent=9535 ADMIN City Council Expenses Hilton Capital $ 335.60 US Conference of Mayors – Lodging ADMIN City Council Expenses American Airlines $ 336.00 US Conference of Mayors – Flight ADMIN City Council Expenses American Airlines $ 25.00 US Conference of Mayors – Luggage charge […]