Governor Pat Quinn’s Arguments against House Gambling Extension Bill

The following handout from Governor Pat Quinn’s legislative lobbying operation has been distributed by the Illinois Church Action on Alcohol and Addiction Problems.


(Proposed Charitable Games Act Amendments)

Would undermine the original intent of the Charitable Games Act to allow charities to conduct modest gaming events as a fundraising activity.

Would allow charities to conduct high stakes gambling:

  • The bill would allow the bet size to double for many games, from $10 to $20, and would allow the cash winnings to double as well, from $250 to $500. The bill would also allow unlimited non cash prizes.
  • For non house backed games like Texas Hold ’em, the bill would allow unlimited amounts to be wagered.
Pat Qunin's arguments against expanding charitable gambling.

Pat Qunin’s arguments against expanding charitable gambling.

Would allow charities to operate casino-like environments:

The bill would allow video gaming terminals to be operated at the same time a charitable games event is conducted. Current law prohibits simultaneous operation of slot machines and similar devices for this very reason.

Would allow more charitable gaming events in the facilities that host such events, increasing the burden on the neighborhoods where these facilities are located.

  • Would change the formula for the amount to be paid to the State by the charity from the event receipts:  rather than 3% of the gross proceeds, the amount would be 5% of the net proceeds could make it more difficult to ascertain whether the correct amount was remitted.

Would allow charities to compete more directly with other forms of legalized gambling:

  • The sum total of the changes made by the bill would enable charities to conduct gaming on a level that legitimately rivals
    other gaming interests, such as riverboats.
    More events with higher betting levels and higher value winnings (cash and non-cash) would increase the challenges of policing these events and enforcing the limitations.


Governor Pat Quinn’s Arguments against House Gambling Extension Bill — 3 Comments

  1. He is against gambling extension yet for gay marriage. He can’t get anything right.

  2. One form of gambling is horse racing.

    Horse racing would be doing fine in Illinois if the legislators had allowed slots in horse racetracks to match other states that added slots in horse race tracks.

    The industry and other states evolved but not Illinois.

    State legislators couldn’t come to agreement on a bill and the casino industry lobbied against the idea.

    The importance is that slots result in larger purses.

    Larger purses attract more horses and more customers.

    More horses and customers results in more jobs and tax revenue.

    Instead, horse racing jobs and tax revenue left the state.

    There is a long history of horses and horse racing in Illinois.

    Arlington Park in Arlington Heights – Thoroughbreds – opened 1927.

    Hawthorne Race Course in Cicero – Thoroughbreds – original racetrack on the site opened in 1891.

    Fairmount Park in Collinsville (St. Louis area) – Thoroughbreds – opened 1925.

    Balmoral Park in Crete – Harness Racing – opened 1926.

    Maywood Park in Melrose Park – Harness Racing – opened 1946.

    Quad City Downs in East Moline – closed (see above for reasons) – 1973.

    So when you hear people say horse racing is dying or dead in Illinois, now you know why.

    Illinois did not keep up with the trend of adding slots to race tracks which results in larger purses to attract more horses and customers.

    So the horses, and jobs they create, and the tax revenue that results, left for the bigger purses in other states.

  3. Illinois is always a step behind when it comes to gambling.

    They should have legalized online gambling by now, or at least let their residents play poker online.

    The problem is that corruption is rampant in Illinois politics.

    Just ask the two former governors.

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