Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has announced four appointments to the Illinois Racing Board, including a consumer loan executive and campaign contributor as chairman.
The appointments will allow the board to resume its business after having to cancel a January meeting because it lacked a chairman. The Illinois Gaming Board, which has a backlog of slot machine license applications, also has been on hiatus pending recent Rauner appointments.
The new IRB Chairman is Jeffrey Brincat of Lake Forest. Brincat is president and CEO of Consumer Financial Services, described as a payday loan company. The Marine Corps veteran contributed $8,300 to Rauner's campaign during the past two years and his wife, Kelly, contributed $5,300, according to Illinois State Board of Elections records. Brincat also contributed $2,500 last year to the political campaign of Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, a Democrat, who currently is locked in a runoff campaign for re-election.
Rauner, a Republican, chose not to extend the tenure of former chairman William Berry of Collinsville, a downstate supporter of, and prolific fund-raiser for, former Gov. Pat Quinn, a Democrat. The IRB conducted its December meeting with a temporary chairman, former exeuctive director Marc Laino.
Rauner also named to the board Shelley Kalita, a family law and immigration attorney from Chicago who served as laboratory director and general counsel for the Racing Board several years ago; Robert Muriel, a Highland Park attorney and former president of the Hispanic Law Association of Illinois; and Travis Swoope of Chicago, an account executive for Microsoft.
The appointments are subject to confirmation by the Illinois Senate.