Monday, August 27, 2012
Quinn Decision Coming On Gambling Expansion Bill
Gov. Pat Quinn does not plan to make a decision on a gambling expansion bill until his final day to act, Tuesday. “It’s about as thick as the Chicago phone book. And we're going through it line by line, and we have to because we found some things that need close intention,” he said last week.
At a news conference Quinn said his biggest concerns when looking at the bill are “ethics and integrity,” as well as “oversight of gamblers and gambling interests — casinos and casino owners.” The governor has called for a ban on campaign contributions from individuals with gaming interests, such as casino and racetrack owners.
SB 1849 would allow for five new casinos statewide: in Chicago, Park City, Danville, Rockford and in the south suburbs of Chicago. The location of the fifth casino would be decided by the Illinois Gaming Board. The bill includes slot machines at horse racing tracks but does not allow for slots at the Illinois State Fairgrounds or Chicago airports, which Quinn has spoken out against. The measure would also allow casinos to up their gaming positions from the current limit of 1,200 to 1,600. Quinn threatened to veto a similar expansion last year, calling it “massive." He has also voiced opposition to allowing slot machines at horse racing tracks.
Bill sponsor, Rep. Lou Lang, said that if Quinn doesn't sign the bill, he'll fight on. “I’m prepared for any eventuality. I’m prepared for a signature, a veto or an amendatory veto, and I think we’ll be able to override.”
You can read Jamey's full report at: http://illinoisissuesblog.blogspot.com/2012/08/quinn-plans-to-act-on-gambling.html