Bloomington Council “hears” budget details

By:  Diane Benjamin The Bloomington City Council meets tonight at 6:00, Normal meets at 7:00. Bloomington tonight:    https://bloomingtonil.iqm2.com/Citizens/FileOpen.aspx?Type=1&ID=1055&Inline=True PDF page 19 Who decides what the “right” fit is and why does their opinion matter? I hope nobody still believes the Council does the budget.  See PDF page 21: The Council gets 10 MINUTES to […]

Bloomington Council: Transparency joke PLUS cannabis Monday

By:  Diane Benjamin The Council held an Executive Session on December 9th to review minutes of previous Executive Sessions.  Review is required by the Open Meetings Act.  The cabal then votes on what minutes no longer need to be kept confidential. See PDF page 46:  http://bloomingtonil.iqm2.com/Citizens/FileOpen.aspx?Type=1&ID=1052&Inline=True The Council voted to keep minutes that are 24 […]

Bloomington Council for Monday – if the roads get cleared

By:  Diane Benjamin http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=20759 Tari is giving his State of the City address – it will be a can’t miss event!  Listen for “Right Fit” and “Structural Deficit”.  Of course everything is rosy. Amelia (let’s move the library) Buragas is being reappointed to the B-N Economic Development Board.  Rob (gas taxes don’t raise the price […]

Buragas proves council isn’t non-partisan

By:  Diane Benjamin The first day petitions for the City Council could be circulated was August 28th.  That’s almost 3 months ago.  Amelia Buragas finally decided on the final day that she wasn’t running again.  She probably notified Tari a few days ago which led to a frantic attempt to get signatures for a candidate […]

Visual: Why the B-N decline will continue

By:  Diane Benjamin Government does not create prosperity.  Government can only function on money it steals from citizens. The pic below is from PDF page 194 of the Bloomington financial statements:     http://www.cityblm.org/home/showdocument?id=20281 10 years ago 4 of the top 10 employers were government, in 2018 it is 5 of 10.  The only government agency […]

Bloomington Business Friendly?

By:  Diane Benjamin Bills and Payroll:   http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=20301 Ending Sick Leave Buy Back and the penalties that go with allowing employees to spike their pensions is not going to end anytime soon.  What the Council passed recently was a dog and pony show designed to make you believe they heard your outrage.  Monday night you will […]

Why Bloomington-Normal is doomed

By:  Diane Benjamin We live in a capitalist country.  It’s called individual freedom to succeed or fail.  The individual is the most important factor in success, the “collective” has no part in capitalism.  Individuals must be free to make their own decisions.  Capitalism doesn’t see genders, race, sexual orientation or any other tags used to […]

Bloomington rushes zoning, WHY?

By:  Diane Benjamin The zoning changes Bloomington has been working on since 2016, and paid $125,000 to a consultant for, are being heard and voted on TONIGHT! No, tonight isn’t a regular meeting, it isn’t even a Committee of the Whole.  It’s a Special meeting called only for the zoning changes. Two hours and twenty […]

Bloomington’s Decline

By:  Diane Benjamin A lot of America has a booming economy, but not Illinois and certainly not Bloomington.  Removing government obstructions allows the private sector to grow, expand, and start new businesses.  If you aren’t the “right fit” here, don’t bother. Ever since Tari Renner was first elected, Master Plans have been created for everything.  […]

McLean County Poverty Increasing

By:  Diane Benjamin See this article posted on the WGLT website:  New-Poverty-Report-Puts-Mclean-County-Watch-List The article doesn’t cover everything in the report by Heartland Alliance.  See the complete report   HERE Did you ever think McLean County would make a Well-Being Watch List? The reason is obvious – except to local government: Sales Tax was increased 1% in 2015.  […]

What does “No Bids” tell you? (and more Council tonight)

By:  Diane Benjamin Bloomington City Council meeting tonight: http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=18264 Beginning on PDF page 380 Remember the Wayfinding signs? In August 2016 the Council hired a firm to design the signs for $62,190.  In December 2017 the Council approved spending another $28,095 for design after the original designs were nixed. They could have held a local contest […]

What’s wrong with Bloomington?

By:  Diane Benjamin Everybody knows the streets aren’t being fixed.  Bloomington can’t even find money in the budget (that has skyrocketed under Tari Renner) to invest in infrastructure.   https://blnnews.com/2018/03/26/nice-pantagraph/ They will happily raise your taxes though to pay for a couple of roads.  Yesterday we learned there was a “disconnect” ordering tickets for the One […]

Another TIF – “Right Fit”

By:  Diane Benjamin Tax Increment Financing (TIF)  districts were meant to redevelop blighted areas.  They divert all increases in property taxes to the City and then to the developers.  The taxes are diverted FROM all other taxing bodies like schools, library, county, township, etc. Downtown Bloomington had a long term TIF that expired a couple […]

Knuckleheads

By:  Diane Benjamin Pre Tari Renner the City of Bloomington didn’t have any staff doing economic development.   See the 2012 job titles HERE For the year ended 4/30/12, the Economic Development Council received $65,610.04   http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=6242 BN Advantage didn’t exist. Was Bloomington better or worse? Post Tari Renner – 2017 The City now has a full time […]

Renner belongs in Cuba

By:  Diane Benjamin Sometimes my stories just write themselves.  This is one of them. See today’s article in the Pantagraph about Tari Renner’s trip to Cuba:  http://www.pantagraph.com/business/renner-reconnecting-bloomington-to-cuban-sister-city/article_5b63446a-77b9-588c-861a-05765c99bde1.html The article ends with this quote from Tari: Free Enterprise?  Here? Let’s look at what the Bloomington City Council will be considering Monday night:  http://www.cityblm.org/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=11529 See PDF page […]