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May 26, 2022

Unregistered Company Solicited Champaign County For $50k –

By John Kraft & Kirk Allen

On November 9, 2021

Champaign Co., IL. (ECWd) –

Unregistered Company Solicited Champaign County For $50k – thankfully, they ignored the request for funding.

Another local government has been solicited for a “donation” or “contribution” or “grant” from a company, which, according to the Secretary of State’s Department of Business Services, is not registered to do business in the state of Illinois. This unregistered company has been soliciting local governments for donations or grants for the purported purpose of developing training for elected officials and police officers.

The company’s name is “Fight For IL”, and is not registered with the Illinois Secretary of State to conduct business in Illinois, it purports to be a 501(c)(3) but has never registered with the Illinois Attorney General’s Charity Bureau to solicit in Illinois (according to both the SOS and AG websites).

This solicitation was sent by Matt Knutelsky (read the email here) on May 11, 2021, to the Champaign County Executive email account.

Fight For IL registered in Florida as a not-for-profit in February 2021, but does not list a FEIN in their business registration, and cannot be found in the Internal Revenue Service’s database of charitable organizations (maybe the IRS is slow in updating its database…). Illinois law requires foreign (out-of-state) corporations to register in Illinois prior to conducting business in Illinois.

The Illinois Charitable Trust Act and Solicitation For Charity Act require registration prior to solicitation in Illinois.

The corporate officers are Bonnie Kurowski, Erik Phelps, and Eowyn Correl. Employees of the corporation (according to their website)  include Matt Knutelsky, Tara Gunder, and Lynn Urlaub.

They recently asked Shelby County for $50,000 to help develop their corporation and indicated in the solicitation they were asking other local governments for grants also.

A copy of the solicitation to Champaign County can be found (HERE).

As always, we challenge any public body to provide the citation to any authority for them to expend any public funds for such a purpose as this.

More on this to follow in the coming days, until then, we urge local governments to do their due diligence prior to gifting taxpayer funds to anyone.

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