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Will State Cuts Hurt Washington County Fair?

By Alex Haglund

Some Illinois county fairs are in dire straits in 2015.

What about Washington County though? Will these cuts mean less fair in 2015 and beyond?

“There’s a rumor going on that Washington County is canceling their fair,” said Fair Board member Erik Rolf. “That’s just not true.”

“What the State does is that the money that’s spent at the fair, they give a percentage of that back to the fair,” said Rolf, “ and the state has been slowly cutting that back over the years”

More recently though, Governor Bruce Rauner sent a letter out in March asking all County Fairs to stop spending state money on rehabilitation, which is used to fix buildings or facilities. These latest cuts have forced some area fairs to cut back what they are offering to fair-goers, including some in the area.

“It might affect us a little bit,” stated Rolf, “but what it is is ‘bonus money’. We have our own deal down here, we have our own account, we make our own money. We try to make the fair as self-sufficient as we can.”

“I don’t think it would shut us down, I think we would keep going the way we are,” Rolf said. “By the same token though, we have to keep people coming through there. That’s how we stay self-sufficient.”

This year’s Washington County Fair will be held Tuesday, July 7, through Saturday, July 11.

For More, Please Read The April 29, 2015 Edition Of The Nashville News.

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