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(Chicago Sun Times) — Not even Taste of Chicago, the city’s premier lakefront festival, is immune from the worst budget crisis in modern history.

Mayor Daley said Thursday he would seek to privatize the Taste, other lakefront festivals and an array of government staples — from animal care to fleet management and curbside recycling — to help erase a record $654.7 million shortfall.

Under heavy pressure from aldermen, the mayor also opened the door to a possibility he had previously foreclosed — declaring a surplus in tax-increment-financing districts and distributing “a portion” of that unallocated revenue to the city and other local government agencies.

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