A new gambling expansion proposal would allow slot machines at all but one of the state’s horse racing tracks.
Fairmount Park in Collinsville would be left out because of an amendment filed by the bill’s sponsor, State Rep. Bob Rita (D-Blue Island). The race track’s president, Brian Zander, says without slot machines, the track may not survive.
“Quite frankly, in terms of sports and gaming entertainment, in the southwestern part of the state, in the St. Louis region, really, we’re getting killed,â€ Zander said.
Rita says the exemption is due to concerns that slots at Fairmount would take money away from the Casino Queen in East St. Louis, which provides revenue for the city. Rita had hoped the two sides would negotiate a solution.
“I’d like where you could come say, everybody’s agreed here, and I think we could get there,” Rita said.
Zander says if Fairmount is allowed to install slot machines, it would add more races and thus create more jobs.