Red Tape May Stall Video Gambling in Illinois

Since video games were approved three years ago, 77 communities have voted to ban them

By Andy Roesgen
|  Monday, Feb 27, 2012  |  Updated 10:55 AM CDT
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Red Tape May Stall Video Gambling in Illinois

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The roll-out of video gambling in Illinois could be stalled because of legal challenges and government red tape.

If you're waiting to do some legal video gambling in Illinois, you may have to wait awhile longer.

Even though some machines could be plugged in as early as September, legal challenges and government red tape are causing more roadblocks, according to The Chicago Tribune.

The paper reports that since video games were approved three years ago, 77 communities have voted to ban them -- and Chicago already has an existing prohibition on gambling machines. That alone is a loss of hundreds of millions of dollars in potential revenue for the state.

Also complicating the games' roll-out is a slow license approval process for the establishments that want to offer them, such as restaurants, bars and truck stops.

The Illinois Gaming Board chairman tells the Tribune a small staff at the board makes it difficult to process the applications for all 144 establishments that want the games so far and makes it difficult to say when exactly the machines will become available.

Even so, the paper reports, manufacturers, lawyers, and bar and restaurant owners have been scrambling to work out deals on getting the gambling machines into those places where they will be legal.

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