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Rauner Wants A Foundation To Help Fund The State Fair

State Fair Ferris Wheels

Should the Illinois State Fair raise more private money?

Governor Bruce Rauner says he’s been visiting the Illinois State Fair daily, and he’d like to see it become the nation’s greatest fair.

Speaking on WILL’s Closing Market Report Tuesday, Rauner said one way to support the fair is by using private donations to help pay for upkeep of the state fairgrounds in Springfield.

RAUNER: “So we’ve recommended that we form a foundation. Some other states have done that. So that we can raise private donations from businesses and individuals who want to give and donate, so that we can use that money to enhance the fairgrounds, enhance the experience for all the visitors, and make this world-class.”

Legislation to create a state fairgrounds foundation was introduced by Republican State Representative Raymond Poe of Springfield back in February. But Rauner says Speaker Michael Madigan and House Democrats have kept it bottled up in committee ever since.

There are state fair foundations in Iowa, Indiana, Missouri and Minnesota. They  all raise money for upkeep of their fairgrounds, but some provide funding for programs as well.. The museum at the Illinois State Fair has a fundraising foundation, but there’s no foundation for the State Fair itself.

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