Hardin County residents say pay up - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Hardin County residents say pay up

ELIZABETHTOWN, IL (KFVS) - A group of residents in Hardin County are fed up with all the costs the county incurs for partying by bikers and jugaloos.

Now the citizens are asking the county leaders to step up and make the partygoers pay back the county for the costs it incurs from the Hog Rock and Gathering of the Jugaloos events.

The parties at Tim York's property began more than 15 years ago.

"The fact that they don't stay on this man's private property. And besides the county is having to fund the police and ambulance services," said Brenda Clanton.

"And they're both going in the hole. That's the frustration."

But, for county leaders and the sheriff it's more than frustration from the events. It's more the loss of tens of thousands of dollars in the county's budget.

"It's over $12,000 for the Insane Clown Posse event," said Hardin County Sheriff Lloyd Cullison.

"I don't have the exact figures on the Hog Rock, but the first event is pretty expensive. I'd say close to $8,000."

The group of citizens who gathered at the Hardin County Board meeting were upset to find out that their county leaders' hands are tied for now on the issue since the events are all taking place on private property.

"It's very frustrating that we don't have the power," said Hardin County Board Chairman Wayne Eichorn.

"If this county was home-rule then we would have taxing ability and a lot more flexibility to deal with matters like this. But since we're not home-rule we have to reach out to our legislators for help."

Now the state legislators are getting involved with this issue in Hardin County.

"If they're going to have these gatherings they ought to pay up," said Illinois Democrat Representative BrandonPhelps, 118th District.

"And pay for the services to offset the cost to the county because the county can't afford this. So what we're doing right now is to find an avenue so we can arm the county to recoup some of that money."

Copyright 2011 KFVS. All rights reserved.

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