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Issue Date: Vol. 52, No. 3, March 2012, Posted On: 3/6/2012

Chicago Leaders Lean Against VLT Approval

Marcus Webb
Alderman Patrick O'Connor,Illinois video lottery, video lottery terminal, VLT, video gaming terminal, coin machine operator, amusement operator, video poker

CHICAGO -- Alderman Patrick O'Connor (D-40th precinct), who serves as floor leader on the city council for Mayor Rahm Emmanuel, said he doubts that city leaders will vote to authorize operator-run video lottery terminals under the 2009 Video Gaming Act.

O'Connor said city leaders prefer a land-based casino to VLTs, and raised the question of "whether there is enough gaming" business to support both. His comments came in a March 1 story published by the Chicago Tribune.

Despite the fact that VLTs could bring Chicago an additional $20 million in tax revenues, O'Connor said city officials have long believed "the trade-off perhaps wasn't worth the paycheck."

Estimates of potential lost revenues to the state government if Chicago does not vote to authorize VLTs range from $68 million to $178 million annually. In 2010, Gov. Pat Quinn said the statewide VLT market could succeed without Chicago. | SEE STORY

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