For months, lawmakers in Illinois have discussed ways to effectively run a new casino in Chicago. It’s been difficult, as state officials are setting unusually high tax rates on this gambling venue. Recently, even more issues have come up with the Chicago casino plans.
It’s frustrating news for proponents of this new casino. Now is the perfect time to look at why exactly it’s so difficult to open this establishment.
Illinois Continues to Push for Casino Expansion
In the 1990s, lawmakers in Illinois approved plans to allow riverboat casinos. The state’s casino industry continued to grow over the years and officials have looked for new ways to generate revenue. Earlier this year, Governor JB Pritzker approved a new Capital Plan that allows for five new gambling venues to open around the state.
Pritzker believes that more revenue from the gambling industry will help to improve the state’s infrastructure. Several locations are now being considered for these new casinos.
One gambling venue has been approved to open in Chicago. It’s the first time ever that a casino has been officially greenlit to open in this major city. Exactly where in Chicago this casino will open is still unknown.
Gambling fans in this state have been eagerly awaiting the new casino in Chicago to open. Unfortunately, this venue is taking longer to open than initially expected. One of the main problems is the aforementioned tax rates that lawmakers have set on this future gambling venue.
The Chicago casino plans are hitting even more issues this month. Many believe that unless something changes, it will never be constructed.
More Problems With the Chicago Casino Plans
If all goes according to plan, Chicago will become the largest US city with a casino. Unfortunately, lawmakers are making things as difficult as possible. They’ve set an absurd 72% tax rate on this gambling venue.
Such as high tax rate makes it virtually impossible for this casino to generate any profit. As a result, many major US casino operators are choosing to stay away from this city. Several have already told the media they have no intention of operating a gambling venue in Chicago.
Lawmakers here recently had the opportunity to change the Chicago casino plans. Hope was that they would agree to lower the tax rate. This did not happen.
Officials here adjourned the fall session without making any changes. Lori Lightfoot, Chicago’s Mayor, claims she will address the issue again in January.
“With so much potential on the line, our city and state deserve to get this done and get this done right,” she said.
Several Chicago neighborhoods have also voiced their disapproval with these gambling venues. Some believe they will increase crime. Based on the way things are going, it will be years before any concrete Chicago casino plans are officially approved.
Competition Continues to Increase Around Illinois
It’s clear that lawmakers in Illinois want to generate more money from the gambling industry. This isn’t the only state with this idea, though. Many nearby states have also recently introduced legislation to expand their gambling markets.
Indiana is also taking measures to allow more casinos. The state’s governor recently approved plans to allow for two new land-based casinos to open.
Lawmakers in Wisconsin also have similar ideas. They’re currently working on plans to open a $405 million gambling venue in Beloit.
State officials continue to review the Chicago casino plans. Over the next year, the Illinois Gaming Board will review plans and applications.
Make sure to stay tuned for more Illinois casino news over the next few months!