The recent findings of the Illinois State Police investigation of Central Illinois Arena Management are appalling and inexcusable. Most egregious is the wording of the indictments and ensuing media coverage that assert this money was stolen from and owed to the city of Bloomington.

No, this money was stolen from and owed to the taxpayers of Bloomington. The wording of the indictments is endemic of politicians who put government ahead of taxpayers. The scene is played out locally on a regular basis by council members in both Bloomington and Normal who blindly follow city staff recommendations, outside consultants and yes, audit reports. The end result is tax increases and rate hikes to feed the uncontrollable appetite of government that is growing at a faster rate than the private sector.

As long as political leaders believe their fiduciary responsibility is to the government and not the taxpayer, we shouldn’t be surprised when more waste, fraud and abuse is uncovered.

Craig Stimpert, Normal

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