Pharos-Tribune

State News

March 12, 2013

Gov. Pence opposes provisions to expand gaming

Bill would allow live table games at Hoosier Park

INDIANAPOLIS —  Indiana Gov. Mike Pence isn’t saying the word “veto,” but he’s making clear he opposes key provisions in a Senate gaming bill that would allow riverboat casinos to move inland and add live table games to the slot-machine rooms at the state’s two horse-racing tracks.

During a press briefing with Statehouse print reporters Tuesday, Pence said he’s “making it known” to legislators that he wants no expansion of gaming in Indiana.

The Republican governor, who also said he’s never bought a lottery ticket, has said previously that he favors the “status quo” of legalized gambling in Indiana, despite rising competition for gaming dollars in neighboring states.

But Tuesday was the first time he said he was asking legislators to oppose specific provisions in the gaming bill that he views as significantly expanding gambling.

The provisions, pushed by the gaming industry and approved by the GOP-controlled Senate, would let existing riverboat casinos move their gaming operations onto land and would let the state’s horse-track racinos in Anderson and Shelbyville become full-fledged casinos by adding live table games.

“Let me just say, we’re making it known to legislators (that) while I have no objection to finding ways we can permit these Indiana businesses to be more competitive financially, I do not support expansion of gaming in Indiana.”

The bill is aimed at the state’s ailing casino industry, which has been losing gaming dollars to neighboring states; in turn, Indiana’s gaming tax revenues are also on the decline.  

Total patronage at the state’s 11 casinos have fallen under 2 million for the past five consecutive months — the longest such streak in a decade. Meanwhile, the four new casinos that have opened in Ohio in the last 10 months are expected to see total casino revenues rise to almost $1 billion a year.

Backers of the bill, including Republican Senate President David Long of Fort Wayne and Democrat Senate Minority Leader Tim Lanane of Anderson, have argued that the legislation doesn’t expand gaming significantly but instead gives the industry more flexibility to compete for elusive gaming dollars.

Along with gaming lobbyists, they’ve argued the riverboats would be the same casinos as before and that live table games at racinos would be replacing electronic poker and blackjack games that already exist.

But Pence doesn’t see it that way. Nor does Republican House Speaker Brian Bosma, who’s described the Senate-approved bill that’s now in the House, as a “pretty significant expansion of gambling in the state.”

Bosma has also said he “doubts the Senate bill will move forward as it’s currently constituted.”

Pence brought up his opposition to the gaming bill with reporters, after he was asked a question about the Hoosier Lottery’s new advertising campaign. The private firm that runs the lottery for the state has revamped the marketing message, focusing on what lottery players dream of doing with a big payout, without mentioning the long odds against winning.  

Pence said he hadn’t seen news stories about the new marketing message, which some lawmakers have described as exploitive and potentially harmful because it encourages gambling.

“I’ve never bought a lottery ticket,” Pence said, before adding, “I don’t gamble on anything except politics.”

Maureen Hayden covers the Statehouse for the CNHI newspapers in Indiana. She can be reached at maureen.hayden@indianamediagroup.com.

 

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
State News
  • Arrest made in slaying of woman found in field GREENFIELD (AP) — An Indianapolis woman has been charged with murder in the fatal shooting of a woman found dead last week along a central Indiana road. Twenty-seven-year-old Amanda Gonzalez was formally charged Monday with murder and assisting a cri

    July 29, 2014

  • Madison County voting records sought in US probe ANDERSON (AP) — A federal grand jury has subpoenaed Madison County voting records after absentee ballots cast in Anderson's 4th Ward determined the winners of several races. The subpoena issued by federal prosecutors seeks several records from the Ma

    July 29, 2014

  • Indiana U. commemorating WWI centennial in 2014-15 INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana University plans to spend the upcoming academic year exploring the lingering impact of World War I. "The Great War" began 100 years ago. Former U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar and former U.S. Rep. Lee Hamilton are joining a round-

    July 29, 2014

  • Coroner rules Lafayette toddler's death a homicide LAFAYETTE (AP) — A coroner has ruled as a homicide last week's death of a 14-month-old Lafayette girl who succumbed to a traumatic head injury. The Marion County Coroner's office reported Monday that the cause of Skylar Foster's death was blunt force

    July 29, 2014

  • Higher ed chief rolls out class load campaign INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana's higher education commissioner wants college students to get the message that they should take at least 15 credit hours each semester if they expect to graduate on time. Commissioner Teresa Lubbers on Monday kicked off a

    July 29, 2014

  • 65,000 chickens die in rural Indiana fire WARSAW (AP) — Thousands of chickens have been killed in a fire on a northern Indiana farm. Approximately 65,000 chickens died in a fire that broke out at Egg Innovations early Monday morning. The Atwood Fire Department responded to the Warsaw busines

    July 28, 2014

  • Ebola American Doctor [Duplicate] [Duplicate] Mother: Doctor with Ebola sought to be missionary INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — An Indianapolis woman whose son contracted Ebola while working in Liberia says family members are praying for his recovery. Dr. Kent Brantly is the medical director for the Ebola care center of the aid group Samaritan's Purse in t

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Accident at NE Indiana factory kills contractor GARRETT (AP) — A northeastern Indiana coroner says a Fort Wayne man died from a head injury he suffered when a scissor-lift toppled inside a factory as he was installing a safety feature on a crane. DeKalb County Coroner Jeff Warner says 54-year-old

    July 28, 2014

  • Former Indiana synagogue to get historical marker LIGONIER, Ind. (AP) — A northern Indiana museum that originally served as a synagogue for a thriving Jewish population will receive a state historical marker next month. The marker honoring the 125-year-old former temple will be unveiled Aug. 31 in t

    July 28, 2014

  • Evansville officials want more local fireworks say EVANSVILLE, Ind. (AP) — Evansville will ask lawmakers for more local authority to restrict private fireworks displays.The Evansville Courier & Press reports council members consulted the city attorney after receiving numerous complaints during the Ju

    July 28, 2014

Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Poll

Should grocery and convenience stores be allowed to sell cold beer?

Yes
No
Unsure
     View Results
Featured Ads
AP Video
Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.