2 in 5 Pa. municipalities ban mini-casino before license auction

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — About 40 percent of Pennsylvania's municipalities are banning a new mini-casino allowed under a two-month-old state law expanding casino-style gambling.

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board said today the list of 1,017 municipalities is final now that Sunday's deadline passed for municipalities inform the agency.

The state's 11 largest licensed casinos can bid at next Wednesday's auction on the first of the 10 mini-casino licenses. The minimum bid is $7.5 million and the winning bidder's chosen location will be unveiled, but it cannot be within 25 miles of a competing casino.

Some of the municipalities that banned a mini-casino are inside of those 25-mile circles, including Philadelphia. The law also bans six counties from hosting a casino, including Armstrong, Montgomery, Fayette, Carbon, Wayne and Pike.

Nine subsequent auctions will take place through May 16.

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