Wildlife Prairie Park bill advances in General Assembly

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Continuing her efforts to preserve and protect our natural resources, legislation sponsored by state Rep. Jehan Gordon-Booth (D-Peoria), to transfer ownership of Wildlife Prairie Park from the state back to the Friends of Wildlife Prairie Park, advanced out of Executive Committee today.  

"Wildlife Prairie Park is a wonderful educational opportunity for children throughout Central Illinois," said Gordon-Booth. "It is also a tourist destination for people throughout the state and region. I am committed to doing everything I can to help Wildlife Prairie Park and would like to thank the Friends of Wildlife Prairie Park for their commitment to maintaining and preserving this landmark."

William Rutherford founded Wildlife Prairie Park on 480 acres of land. The land is used for the protection and conservation of natural ecosystems found in Central Illinois. The Friends of Wildlife Prairie Park gave the state of Illinois possession of the park in 2000. After years of budget cuts to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, the Friends of Wildlife Prairie Park have offered to take over the maintenance of the park to keep it open to the public.

House Bill 1292, which now will be placed on the House calendar, requires that the Friends of Wildlife Prairie Park to maintain the education and recreational facilities of the park. If passed, the state of Illinois will transfer the maintenance and management responsibilities to the Friends of Wildlife Prairie Park. 

"This is another wonderful example of the Peoria area citizens doing everything they can to help their community," said Gordon-Booth. "I am happy to do my part to preserve one of the greatest treasures of Central Illinois."

The bill's co-sponsors include Rep. David Leitch, R-Peoria, and Rep. Michael Unes, R-Pekin.

For more information about this or other upcoming legislation, please contact Rep. Gordon-Booth's constituent service office at (309) 681-1992 or repjgordon@gmail.com.