(SPRINGFIELD) The Illinois Department of Agriculture has appointed a Southeastern Illinois native as the new State Fair Manager. As the new Manager of Fair & Promotional Services, Luke Sailer will oversee the bureaus of County Fairs & Horse Racing, Illinois State Fair, Du Quoin State Fair, and Business Services. Originally of Carmi, Sailer has been with the State Ag Department for three years, and the 25 year old will succeed Kevin Gordon, who retired after two years on the job. Ag Director Raymond Poe says Sailer’s management experience, combined with his southern Illinois agricultural background, makes for a winning combination when it comes to the management of state and county agricultural fairs. While the statewide county fairs in Illinois run from June to September, the Illinois State Fair in Springfield is August 9–19 and the Du Quoin State Fair is August 24–September 3. Sailer is the fourth State Fair Manager in Illinois in three years time.
(SPRINGFIELD) Legislation was introduced in Springfield last month that was approved last week in the State House Vehicles and Safety Committee to allow for the issuance of “In God We Trust” special license plate decals by the Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs. Under the bill, which is sponsored by State Representative David Reis, $11 of each original issuance and $24 of each renewal will be deposited into the Illinois Veterans’ Homes Fund and that $15 of each original issuance and $2 of each renewal shall be deposited into the Secretary of State Special License Plate Fund. A total of seventeen (17) states currently have some form of an “In God We Trust” license plate, including our neighbors in Indiana, Kentucky, and Wisconsin. The bill now goes before the full State House of Representatives for its consideration.
(CENTRALIA) It was during a Marion County visit to Murray Development Center this past Friday, that Governor Bruce Rauner was given an official Key to the City of Centralia. Despite his being at odds with the state’s largest union in the past, AFSCME members greeted the Governor with signs supportive of his decision three years ago to keep the Murray Center open, ending a process started by former Governor Pat Quinn to close the facility in 2015. Governor Rauner said he’ll proudly display Centralia’s Key to the City in the State Capital since it is the first Key of the City he has received while being Governor of Illinois.