Retail locations could have five lottery terminals while fraternal or veterans’ organizations could operate up to ten.
Commander Eric Lowing at the American Legion Post 397 in Creve Coeur says it would be a huge help for them,
“Overall, the number of veterans are joining places like the Legion and VFW are down over the years,” said Lowing. “It would provide us an opportunity to maintain our property and continue to remain open for the public and support our veterans.”
Sen. Denny Hoskins (R-Warrensburg) says the State of Missouri would be a big winner as well. The state is estimated to collect $180 million from the video lottery machines. The money would go towards education and veterans’ homes, said Hoskins.
But casinos are concerned. According to a study of the bill, “The extent of the reduction in revenue in both state and local taxes from riverboat gaming casinos and charitable bingo is unknown but significant, as has been the case in other states which have video lottery terminals,” read the study.
To help out casinos, the bill does allow for sports betting. Taxes from wagering on sporting events could bring in an additional $65 million. But for now, sports betting is illegal under federal law. Hoskins said if that changes, the casinos could participate.
News4 is still awaiting a response from the Missouri Gaming Association.
The bill is in the early stages.
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By Alexis Zotos, Reporter