Just after Governor Pat Quinn gave a budget address announcing reducing state spending on education by $400 million dollars, an Illinois Senate committee approved legislation advocates say could eliminate cuts to schools. The plan sponsored by Senator Terry Link, a Democrat from Waukegan, authorizes five new casinos in Illinois, and directs all of the money generated by them to go toward education. Link's measure is similar to one Quinn just rejected earlier this week. But Link says this version addresses the governor's demands for tighter ethical standards.
This version also has other major differences. For the first time, it would allow internet gambling in Illinois. Opponents are concerned that would make it easy for kids to place buts. But Link says there's no reason to worry:
"Also in the technology we would know if you were over 21. You would have to do all of this verification. We would know where you're coming from."
ink says there is still work to do, like determining a maximum wager for online gambling. His proposal would also allow for slots at horse race tracks, and at Chicago's two major airports. It does not, however, permit slots at the Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield, which had been a possibility in previous packages.
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