Gambling Expansion Revived in House but Stalls in Committee

A dormant gambling-expansion plan came to life just long enough to stall in a House committee.

The Executive Committee's 5-4 vote Monday on Rep. Robert Rita's plan was one vote shy of the six needed to move it to a floor vote.

The Blue Island Democrat's long-discussed plan won Senate OK 15 months ago as part of a "grand bargain" to break what was then a 20-month stalemate over the budget. It would authorize six new casinos, including Chicago, and allow slot machines at horse racing tracks.

Rita added several provisions to the measure. They include also allowing table games at race tracks and creating sweepstakes games.

Critics believe new casinos would simply strip revenue from existing ones.

The Legislature is scheduled to adjourn Thursday.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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