Anderson Paper: No To Ft. Wayne Casino

The Anderson’s Herald Bulletin recently ran an editorial encouraging the State not to award a casino license to Fort Wayne.  The article may be viewed in its entirety here.

Editorial: State should not give casino license to Fort Wayne
We believe: A casino in Fort Wayne would pull business from Hoosier Park.

Fort Wayne wants a casino. If it gets one, will other communities be demanding casinos to boost their revenue? How many casinos is enough or too much?

Those are questions lawmakers would have to answer before Fort Wayne got a gaming site. The city already has off-track betting with Hoosier Park.

At least Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry is upfront about a casino: It’s all about revenue for the city. “Running the city requires us to constantly seek new ideas and new ways of doing things,” he told The Associated Press.

[…] A casino in downtown Fort Wayne would probably be a hard sell for the General Assembly, which has been reluctant in the past to grant further gambling licenses. The Associated Press said that it took 10 years of lobbying for French Lick to get a license. And it was an existing license that was transferred to French Lick. It took a similar length of time to get the slot machines at the two horse racing tracks.

A casino in Fort Wayne would mean the creation of a 14th license. As much as Summit City would be lobbying for a casino, anti-gambling forces from Allen County and elsewhere would descend upon the Statehouse to keep a casino out of their community.

Plus, the state would require hundreds of millions of dollars for a license, meaning that the revenue Fort Wayne is counting on might not be as lucrative as the city thinks.

[…] The state shouldn’t arbitrarily take away the success of one community by transplanting it to another community.

Like all Indiana communities, Fort Wayne is hurting. But it’s doubtful that the state will bail all those communities out with gambling licenses, which it shouldn’t. Like other communities, Fort Wayne will have to look elsewhere for revenue. Good luck.

Thanks to Mitch Harper for the head’s up!

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