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updated: 2/27/2014 10:44 PM

Quinn redirects party campaign funds to charity

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Associated Press

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- Gov. Pat Quinn and state Sen. Mike Frerichs redirected campaign money to charities after it was revealed earlier this week that a Democratic county organization led by a state employee contributed to their campaigns.

Last summer, the Douglas County Democratic Party received a $10,000 donation from Foresight Energy Services Co. of St. Louis, a coal mining company with operations in Illinois, which they split among several candidates, including Quinn.

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Douglas County Democratic Party Chairman Michael L. Woods is also an employee of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. The Champaign News-Gazette reported on Thursday that Wood has been reassigned pending a department investigation.

Quinn's campaign received $7,500 in contributions from the county Democratic organization, including $5,000 in cash. Smaller contributions went to other candidates in the state. Frerichs, a Democrat from Champaign running for state treasurer, received $250.

Quinn's campaign on Wednesday announced they redirected the campaign contribution. Leslie Wertheimer, a spokeswoman for Quinn's campaign, said the campaign doesn't accept contributions from state employees.

"Immediately upon learning today of previous donations from this entity and their connection to a state employee, the governor directed that these funds be donated to worthy charities across Illinois," Wertheimer said.

Quinn's campaign gave $2,000 each to four charities. Wertheimer said the campaign rounded up to an $8,000 donation.

Frerichs said he donated $250 to the Eastern Illinois Foodbank in Urbana.

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