Climate Change Question

By:  Diane Benjamin Hey, it’s Friday.  Time to have some fun.  Emails received by FOIA. Remember when the US Conference of Mayors was held in Hawaii?  The same people lecturing and taxing to save the environment flew across an ocean to attend.  Mayor Koos attended the Climate Summit held right before it. Obviously Climate Change […]

Flashback: May 11, 2016 Renner

By:  Diane Benjamin WJBC has reported Tari Renner wants to end the moratorium on new video gaming  machines: http://www.wjbc.com/2019/07/29/renner-sides-with-businesses-seeking-to-end-bloomingtons-video-gaming-freeze/ I remember when the moratorium was put in place, Tari was outraged that $50 million a year went into the machines.  It sounds like he changed his mind. Back in 2016 Tari was on WJBC talking […]

Bloomington bills for Monday

By:  Diane Benjamin http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=22247 Tari and the employees had fun: Add the previous Hawaii expenses of $1,968.00, and Tari’s trip cost $3,892.50.  https://blnnews.com/2019/04/18/off-to-hawaii/ This is what the Pantagraph reported:    Pantagraph.com twin-city-mayors-focus-on-transit-climate-at-conference The cost of the CONFERENCE was $950.00.  The paper didn’t include that part.  What did taxpayers get?  The bill? Remember the FREE entertainment […]

Stupidity Chronicles

By:  Diane Benjamin Today the Pantagraph printed a Letter to the Editor submitted by Roger Hellman.  I’m purposely using his name.  Although he doesn’t say what kind of gun legislation he wants to see, it’s obvious he would be delighted if every gun was confiscated.  See it  HERE Is the Pantagraph this clueless?  Roger thinks […]

Off to Hawaii!

By:  Diane Benjamin Bills and Payroll for Monday:  http://www.cityblm.org/home/showdocument?id=21630 See the agenda for the US Conference of Mayors here:  https://www.usmayors.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/USCM-Honolulu-Agenda-041519-WEB.pdf Note the “Best practices” sessions.  They want everybody to think what works in Los Angeles will work in Bloomington.  Only fools think “best practices” can be determined by people not familiar with local conditions.  Tari […]

Non-Partisan?

By:  Diane Benjamin History Review: Obama won the October 2009 Noble Peace Prize.  He had been in office less than 9 months. During his 8 years (a short list): Russia seized Crimea Russia threatened Ukraine and shot down a passenger plane killing everyone on board North Korea developed long-range missiles China built islands for bases […]

Why was Renner’s cost more than Koos?

By:  Diane Benjamin From Bills and Payroll for 7/23/2018  http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=18360 PCard charge for Tari Renner –  Hotel only, US Conference of Mayors in Boston: Since Tari doesn’t have a PCard, it must have been booked with this card. 3 nights for Chris Koos including two charges at the hotel’s Champion Sports Bar was only $1209.99.    https://blnnews.com/2018/07/13/normal-we-must-entertain-and-more/ […]

Normal: We must entertain! (and more)

By:  Diane Benjamin A reader asked me how much the Town of Normal contributes to the CornBellters, so I FOIA’d that information.  The Normal Cornbelters are another quasi-government organization with no transparency. Did you know for 20 years Normal is rebating all food and beverage taxes? I wonder if they audit sales?  How are cash […]

Mayors traveling – at your expense

By:  Diane Benjamin According to this website:  https://www.statista.com/statistics/241695/number-of-us-cities-towns-villages-by-population-size/ there were 19,505 communities in the United States in 2015. 16,470 have a population under 10,000.  That leaves 3,035 larger cities. The US Conference of Mayors claims to represent 1,409 communities.  Since tiny cities don’t attend, 1409 of 3035 is only 46.4%.   http://mayorsagenda.com/about-us/ The next meeting is June […]

Bloomington’s Monday Food, Travel, and more

By:  Diane Benjamin Bills and Payroll for 5/29/2018  http://www.cityblm.org/Home/ShowDocument?id=17800 See page 86-93.  All the NEGATIVE numbers mean they spent more than was budgeted for that area. It’s illegal to spend what isn’t budgeted without Council approval.  If I have time I may investigate further. Note:  Remember all Tari’s free lunches he claimed were for City business?  […]

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! […]

Stories you probably missed

Just a few stories most media ignores: History of Illinois Fiscal Crisis (Hint:  both parties are at fault) https://www.illinoispolicy.org/reports/the-history-of-illinois-fiscal-crisis/   Austin’s Complete Streets Nightmare (Austin went with buses, since few ride buses here – local government is forcing bike lanes) http://www.texasturf.org/2012-06-01-03-09-30/latest-news/2113-austin-s-complete-streets-policy-a-complete-nightmare?mc_cid=1b7d77465e&mc_eid=26ab1cd66c   Renner didn’t sign on – Koos did Update:  Renner did sign – he […]

Slick Willy, Nonsense, and more

By:  Diane Benjamin http://www.cityblm.org/government/advanced-components/documents/-folder-500 Bills and Payroll isn’t posted yet for Monday night: Hiding something? ________________________ Tari Renner and Chris Koos are in for a treat today at the US Conference of Mayors:  Former Present Bill Clinton spoke at the “City Livability Luncheon”.   I wonder if he will speak longer than scheduled?  I wonder […]

Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum

By:  Diane Benjamin Tari Renner and Chris Koos are lounging around Miami this weekend at your expense.  Smart organizers would have held the twice a year US Conference of Mayors in Miami in the winter, but these are government people.  I wonder if we will see photos of them on the beach?  (eek!) All last […]

Renner: the hotel bill

By:  Diane Benjamin See this post from 7/22:  More-tari-eating-by-himself? A list of P-Card charges from June are included. Mayor Renner attended the US Conference of Mayors in Indianapolis, the hotel bill was $1,044.52. The conference was June 24 – June 27.  USmayors.org/84thAnnualMeeting This is a copy of the bill – obtained under FOIA: $756 was […]

The Honorable Chris Koos

By:  Diane Benjamin Taxpayers fund trips taken by their elected officials without having a clue what the agenda is. This year both Koos and Renner attended the US Conference of Mayor where they unanimously supported net neutrality – the government take over of the Internet. I just got this tip from a reader concerning last […]

More Eating at your expense

By:  Diane Benjamin Below are P-Card (like a debit card, except billing is once a month) charges for the month of January (scroll to the bottom):  http://www.cityblm.org/Modules/ShowDocument.aspx?documentid=8213 ________________________________ Jimmy John’s # 1408 $ 181.44 Working Dinner D. Hales, T. Renner, City Council, 5 Other Staff‐ 01/12/2015 Monicals Pizza $ 45.75 Working Lunch for Finance Department‐ 01/07/2015 Lucca […]