Murphysboro Mayor created state budget t-shirt to raise money for state agencies

MURPHYSBORO, IL (KFVS) - Murphysboro Mayor Will Stephens found a way to help state agencies feeling the pain of the state budget impasse.

Mayor Stephens is raising money for three agencies: Women's Center in Carbondale, R.A.C.E.S. in Urbana, and Unity Parenting & Counseling in Chicago.

"The hope is here to make some lemonade out of lemons," Mayor Stephens explained "This is not a good situation for the state of Illinois, everyday the state racks up 2M in late penalties on bills, 14.5 B in past due bills who have done work for the state legitimately."

He collaborated with local friends and business owners to create a t-shirt.

"I thought this would add a unique touch to it that might capture peoples attention and make it a little more effective," he said.

The shirt shows a cartoon of a MISSING Illinois budget, saying if found return to Springfield.

The owner of the screen printing company said they already have 100 orders to fill online for these shirts within just two days after the launch.

The $12 t-shirt makes a $7 profit that will benefit 3 state agencies, one being the Women's Center in Carbondale, Ill.

This reason alone led one consumer, Forest Stewart, to already purchase his shirts.

"I bought the two t-shirts, one for me and one for my wife….just knowing that  the money that's going from this t-shirt that will Stephens designed is going to help these different organizations is fantastic," Stewart explained. "Because we need them. It's very essential to the livelihood of not only to the people that they are helping but to the state as well for somebody to turn to."

According to a spokeswoman at the Women's Center, the proceeds will go towards their general funds to offset money they haven't received from the state.

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