Outside the Beltway: Luaus in Illinois? Sure, When Pork Is What’s for Dinner!

Mike Brownfield /

Luaus in Illinois?

$1,100 for Hawaiian party props and luaus? $78,066 to promote quail? $6,500 for a 4,000-gallon live bass fish tank? $10,000 for a Batman party? $353,165 to fund car racing?

Congratulations, Illinoisans, you’re funding all this and more with your hard-earned taxpayer dollars, courtesy of your state government in Springfield.

But those pet projects are a mere drop in the bucket compared to the $350 million in Illinois state government pork barrel spending the Illinois Policy Institute (IPI) identifies in its “2010 Illinois Piglet Book,” released Tuesday.