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IL Ponders 24 Hour Gambling

Mon, 02 Sep 2013 06:16:11 CDT
By: IPR's Amanda Vinicky

Illinois' gaming regulators will decide if casinos can stay open around the clock. The gaming board is holding a special meeting about it later this month. IPR's Amanda Vinicky reports:

Casinos only briefly close now - the Casino Queen, in East St. Louis, opens its doors at 8 in the morning and closes at 6 a.m. The Rivers casino, in Des Plaines, closes at 7 in the morning and reopens again at 9.
But both casinos want the ability to stay open those extra two hours.
Tom Swoik, who represents a handful of Illinois' ten riverboats, says it could generate a bit of extra income for the casinos -- and by extension the state -- at a time when their revenues are down.
"With the video gaming that's going on now, for example truck stops are allowed to stay open 24 hours a day. So people can play video gaming at truck stops 24 hours a day, why not at the casinos?"

''It's a dangerous thing, and the casinos in Illinois do not need to go to 24-hour gambling, what they need to do is stop the 24-hour gambling at truck stops, cause those are local people who are gambling all night."

That's anti-gambling activist Anita Bedell, who says it's a way for casinos who take advantage of sleep-deprived gamblers who aren't thinking clearly.

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