If you live in Illinois, we are sure you are eager for the casinos to open back up. The Illinois Gaming Board oversees ten casinos and over 36,000 slot machines in over 7,000 locations throughout Illinois. All casinos and devices have been shut down since mid-March in an effort to diminish the spread of the coronavirus.
While the board hasn’t announced an official date when it will allow casinos to reopen, but they did announce that officials are reviewing the safety plans submitted by casino owners that include details on how they will comply with the updated health standards.
We assume that when casinos reopen, slot machines will be turned on at bars, gaming parlors, and other facilities they are currently located at.
Words from the Top
Gene O’Shea, the board’s spokesmen, released this public statement on the matter, “The timing of resumption of video gaming and casino gaming depends entirely on the public health conditions at the time.
Additionally, any resumption of video gaming or casino gaming will resume within the framework of the Restore Illinois plan. Under that plan, the earliest gaming could resume is Phase 4.”
The Illinois Gaming Board hinted that many gambling locations would be back in business by June 26. That is the date the state is expected to move into Phase 4. Of course, this date is tentative because it relies on the continued decrease in the number of new COVID-19 cases.
Whenever the state does enter Phase 4, casinos will be limited to 50% capacity for a limited period of time to comply with the Illinois Department of Public Health safety guidelines.
The board released a checklist to help casino owners plan well for their reopening. This checklist gives us a better idea of how to expect casinos to operate for the foreseeable future.
A few of the things on the checklist include:
- Restaurants, hotels, and spas must comply with local and state health requirements.
- Crowds are limited to 50% of maximum fire-code capacity.
- All guests must maintain 6 feet of social distance.
- Employees and guests must wear face coverings.
- Casinos must be cleaned, sanitized, and disinfected regularly.
If everything goes according to plan, in Illinois, casinos will have the green light to open within the week.
While I think it is exciting to finally be able to visit casinos in Illinois again, I also know that there are significant changes to ensure the safety of all guests in attendance.
The Illinois Gaming Board is working hard to abide by all safety protocols issued by the governor, and it shows.