Lori Lightfoot Wants a Change to Illinois’ New Casino Plans

Lawmakers in Illinois are currently working to expand the state’s casino industry. Part of this plan is to allow a casino in Chicago. This week, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot commented on Illinois’ new casino plans.

Lori Lightfoot At Press Conference

There are questions surrounding tax rates for this Chicago casino. State officials are busy working on ways to attract casino operators while keeping things profitable for the state. Here’s what’s going on right now.

The New Capital Plan in Illinois, Explained

Illinois hasn’t always been thought of as a gambling-friendly state. In recent years, however, lawmakers here have recognized the major revenue potential from this industry. In June, Illinois Governor JB Pritzker signed the state’s new capital plan, calling it “the most comprehensive reconstruction effort in this state’s history.”

This new plan is aimed at improving Illinois’ infrastructure. It allows for five new casinos to be constructed around the state. One of these casinos will open in Chicago. It’s the first legal gambling venue to ever open in the Windy City.

$45 billion is being invested in the state’s capital plan. Hope is that revenue from casinos here can help to reconstruct roads, bridges, and schools. Gambling fans around the state are eagerly awaiting these new casinos to open.

Unfortunately, some of the country’s top gambling companies aren’t interested in operating this Chicago casino. Many claim that the tax rates being set on the gambling venue making it impossible to gain a profit.

Lori Lightfoot has been working to revamp Illinois’ new casino plans. This week, she officially presented her pitch to rewrite legislation for the casino in Chicago.

Chicago Mayor Wants Changes to Illinois’ New Casino Plans

At first, the news of a casino being approved in Chicago was exciting. More than 2.7 million people live in this city, many of whom claim to gamble on a regular basis. Unfortunately, issues have already come up with regard to this new gambling establishment.

This week, Lori Lightfoot made an official pitch to state lawmakers to rewrite legislation surrounding Illinois’ new casino plans. The mayor presented her new ideas for this gaming bill. She claims that the current 72% tax rate set on the Chicago casino would make it impossible to attract investors.

“We feel like things are moving forward in a positive direction but we’ve got to get the language finalized and get it to the respective chambers so that legislators can see what the outlines of the legislation look like,” the mayor said. 

Governor Pritzker seems optimistic that Lightfoot’s plans can be approved before the fall veto session wraps up.

“It’s good for the city, it’s good for the state, so we will be working very hard to try to get something through,” Pritzker said. “There is still some negotiation discussion going on, but I am hopeful that over the next three days we will be able to get it through.”

We’ll need to wait and see how lawmakers feel about the mayor’s new plans. Hopefully, they can come to an agreement and US casino companies can begin getting excited about opening a venue in Chicago.

Illinois Will Soon Have Sports Betting Options Available

It’s clear that officials in this state are trying their best to capitalize on the gambling industry. Illinois’ new casino plans are currently being worked on, and sports betting options are just around the corner. This is all thanks to the US Supreme Court striking down PASPA in May of 2018.

With PASPA now gone, every state can set its own laws on the sports betting industry. Lawmakers in Illinois officially approved a sports gambling bill in June of 2019. Soon, both online and in-person sports betting will be available here.

Illinois will likely have one of the most lucrative sports betting markets in the country. This state is home to several major sports teams including the Chicago Bears, Chicago White Sox, and the Chicago Blackhawks.

It’s unclear exactly when the state’s regulated sports betting industry will open up. Lawmakers here are still working to grant licenses to sports gambling operators.

Do you think Illinois’ new casino plans will be effective at generating revenue? Should tax rates be lowered for the casino in Chicago? Let us know what you think in the comments section below!