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Boone County Board rejects the latest attempt to get rid of Mexican-style rodeos

Maria Gardner Lara
The public looks on as Boone County Board members discuss a proposal to reduce the number of rodeos an operator can host.

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Rodeo owners and enthusiasts in Boone County got some relief after the latest attempt to get rid of the Mexican style rodeos known as charrerias failed.

The Boone County board voted down an amendment 6 to 5, with Dana Logsdon declining to vote on the measure that would have reduced the number each rodeo owner can host from four to two. It also would have banned most rodeo competition events.

Former Chairman Karl Johnson called the proposal the worst legislation he’s seen in his thirteen plus years on the board.

“I think we've allowed one set of individuals hijack our entire process and to basically do this legislation for us,” Johnson said. “We failed to do our homework, we failed to look at this correctly. We failed a large portion of our population and I'm sorry.”

Last year the board reduced the number of rodeo permits per rodeo operator from six to four.

Support for the latest proposal was largely driven by animal rights activists with some folks complaining about noise and traffic. But rodeo proponents argue the opposition to charrerias is rooted in animosity toward the growing Latino community.

A Chicago native, Maria earned a Master's Degree in Public Affairs Reporting from the University of Illinois Springfield . Maria is a 2022-2023 corps member for Report for America. RFA is a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms to report on under-covered issues and communities. It is an initiative of The GroundTruth Project, a nonprofit journalism organization. Un residente nativo de Chicago, Maria se graduó de University of Illinois Springfield con una licenciatura superior en periodismo de gobierno.