Labor council pays bill for Capitol dome Christmas lights

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — A labor union council has foot the bill for Christmas lights on the Illinois State Capitol dome this holiday season.

The (Springfield) State Journal-Register reports Basic Crafts Council of Mid-Central Illinois has made a $7,300 payment to Springfield City Water, Light and Power to pay the costs associated with the lights. The council is made up of three union locals.

Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White’s office had said last week it would forgo the annual tradition because the lights are an unnecessary cost amid the state budget impasse.

Before the unions stepped in, Executive Vice President Kristina Rasmussen of the conservative Illinois Policy Institute began a crowdfunding campaign raise the $7,300. Rasmussen said Monday she plans to donate the $1,570 it raised to a food pantry.