Gambling Opponents Trying to Make Their Voices Heard

Gambling Opponents Trying to Make Their Voices Heard

Photo: Newsradio WTAX

Anti-gambling forces want local referenda in any of the places being eyed for a new casino.

It’s what communities deserve, says the Rev. John Alan Boryk, a retired United Methodist pastor from Des Plaines and part of the Stop Predatory Gambling campaign. “We do have the right to express what comes into our community, and this is an issue that can change a community’s quality,” he said.

He says both candidates for governor have indicated at some time that they think new casinos should be subject to a local referendum. It’s not part of gambling expansion legislation now, nor has it been part of recent bills.

Winnebago County voters passed an advisory referendum in 1994 to require a referendum if there’s to be a casino there. In Arlington Heights, where Arlington Park race track has been angling to get slot machines, a city-wide casino referendum passed by 33 votes in 1995.

Gambling opponents recognize that pro-casino forces will have a lot more money to spend on a pro-casino referendum campaign than opponents will. They say if the spending was roughly even, they expect public sentiment would be roughly even, and if a referendum occurred under those circumstances, they’d live with the results.

Pending casino legislation envisions new casinos in Chicago, Danville, Rockford, the Waukegan area and the South Suburbs of Chicago, as well as slot machines at race tracks.

Recent Headlines

in Local

Chicago Cop Charged with Murder in Shooting Death of Teen

Jason Van Dyke

Jason Van Dyke allegedly shot Laquan McDonald, 17.

in Local

Crops Unaffected by Rain, Snow


Winter wheat 95 percent emerged

in Local

Durbin Challenges Rauner on Refugees

syrian refugees

Rauner has spoken with federal Homeland Security officials

in Local

New Roof at Executive Mansion

governor's mansion

Private funds raised for roof repairs.

in Local

Lines of Candidates for Day 1 of Filing

11-23-15 Filing Day

Monday is the first day to file petitions for statewide and federal political candidates in Illinois. More than three-hundred people…