A key Illinois legislator revealed that a new mega-casino could be established in Chicago, with the final stage of the massive gambling expansion negotiations being reached.
Senator Terry Link, who is the bill’s sponsor in the Senate, revealed that such a casino in Chicago could be three times larger than any gambling venue which is operating in Illinois to date. As Senator Link further explained, the mega-casino would be established as part of a larger casino expansion that is set to see six new casino venues established on the territory of the state. The expansion would also include the addition of slot machines to three horse racing tracks, which would gradually turn them into casino establishments, as well.
Moreover, the businesses which are currently offering video gambling would get permission to add one machine per establishment, with the move itself equalling six more casinos. As revealed yesterday, the city would get a 33% portion of the adjusted gross receipts of the new mega-casino. In comparison, other communities get only 5% in similar ventures.
For the time being, Senator Link has been the only one who has unveiled some details about the proposal. In any case, no final deal on the measure has been made so far.
Local Lawmakers Have Only a Few Hours to Decide on Gambling Expansion
Neither the administration of Governor Pritzker nor Mayor Lori Lightfoot has shared any details on the ongoing gambling discussions, which does not seem encouraging, considering the fact that today is the final day for a deal to become law.
Senator Link, however, has revealed that the piece of legislation which is being considered is similar to previous deals which have been discussed in General Assembly. Two of them were vetoed by the former Governor of Illinois, Pat Quinn. Unlike Quinn, Governor Pritzker is willing to take advantage of the additional gambling revenue which the negotiated gambling expansion would bring to the state. So far, he has been engaged in getting the deal done and has demonstrated certain flexibility regarding some of its details.
Yesterday, Governor Pritzker has told reporters that a gambling bill was probably to be forged soon. Initially, he asked Illinois lawmakers to stick to the legalization of sports betting which has become legal in the country after in May 2018 the US Supreme Court ruled in favor of the new form of gambling and lifted the federal ban which was imposed on it.
According to Senator Link, at this stage of the negotiations, a possible gambling expansion could be approved even without the addition of sports betting to the state’s gambling sector. Chicago mayor further shared that the increased pressure for an expansion of Illinois’ gambling market would put the establishment of a new mega-casino in the city as one of the top legislative priorities.