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Casino gambling in Ohio? Don't hold your breath

By Bertram de Souza (Contact)

Published January 13, 2009

Just two months after Ohio voters defeated a ballot measure that would have allowed a $600 million casino resort in southwest Ohio, there are two new proposals for the expansion of gambling that could wind up on the November general election ballot.

But considering that Ohioans have turned thumbs down four times on gambling initiatives since 1990, there is nothing to indicate that this year would be any different. Indeed, Ohio's hypocrisy on the issue of gambling is now well established. We have the state lottery, including the multistate Mega Millions and a whole array of instant tickets, keno, horse racing and bingo.

The only way casino-style gambling will become a reality in Ohio is if Democratic and Republican political leaders, the business community and all the religious organizations join forces in selling the idea.

And since that isn't going to happen — the largest beneficiary of bingo, the Catholic Church, will never support the expansion of gambling — the recent talk about the two casino proposals is just that, talk.

Ohio may be going down the financial tubes, but at least we can say we didn't gamble with our future. (Such hypocrisy seems to strike a chord.)


1JeffLebowski(953 comments)posted 7 years, 6 months ago

My sentiments exactly, sir. It is like a bad joke that keeps getting told over and over again: unemployment rises while companies eager to employ thousands and pay millions in taxes are turned away.

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2tsterni(21 comments)posted 7 years, 6 months ago

sterni wrote:
You don't get it ! $50 million license fee at the 7 tracks thats $350 mill and $100 million at the 4 stand alones thats another $400 mill is due the day they open. The tracks can open with in 6 months the have the temporary building to start. Now the senate is talking 40% plus 2 % for gaming board 1% for gaming addiction 6 to 10% for purse increases thats 53% total Pa. gets 54% now from 7 locations they did $1 billion in the first year in revenue. Not to mention the jobs, local taxes, county city, SS, fica, workers comp, property taxes and cat taxes.the 4 stand alones need construction jobs and expansion construction jobs at the tracks. Gaming board more jobs, slot inspector, investigators, computers, cameras, wiring of slot direct to the gaming board. Entertainment halls, resturants and outside vendors make more, conventions! and more jobs !!

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3tsterni(21 comments)posted 7 years, 6 months ago

$7 billion in budget short fall its either Raise Taxes or get Casino your choice!
In Columbus Dispatch latest poll, Casino won 78% to 22% when asked! If Strickland raise taxes he knows the republicains will kill him come election time.

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4RedAngel(2 comments)posted 7 years, 6 months ago

To date, all of the proposals for casino gambling have been perceived as only a benefit to a particular area of the state or designated for purposes that can be too easily diverted for politcal/personal gain. If the correct casino legislation was introduced it would pass. Let each county vote to permit casino gambling and have control and I assure you, there would be casino gambling in OHIO.

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