State Representative Mike Murphy (R-Springfield) released the following statement in response to Governor JB Pritzker canceling the Illinois State Fair:
“I understand the difficulty and importance of taking every safety precaution as we decide whether or not to hold certain events as we continue to deal with COVID-19,” said Murphy. “However, I am very disappointed in the Governor’s unilateral decision to cancel the State Fair. Not only was it inappropriate to make this decision without feedback from our Central Illinois communities that rely on the millions of dollars generated by the event, but he is once again exceeding his authority and violating state law by not consulting the legislature.
“As is stands today, Central Illinois should already be in phase 4 of his economic reopening plan, and the fair was not scheduled to take place for two months. By mid-August, we would have been well into phase 4, if not phase 5, and taking appropriate health and safety precautions to move forward with the fair was a very real likelihood.
“This decision is also a huge blow to our agriculture industry that is already suffering and fails to consider various alternative ways to showcase this vital Illinois industry. Yet, beyond all of this, I feel for the youth of our state who have been preparing all year to showcase their livestock during the Sale of Champions and will not have that opportunity this year.
“There was time to consider safely restructuring the fair and move forward, and it is extremely unfortunate that has not happened.”