Archive for Monday, March 26, 2007

Kansas House approves expanded gambling bill

March 26, 2007


Topeka Kansas moved a step closer to a major increase in legal gambling as the House on Monday approved a bill that would allow top-tier casinos and slot machines at racetracks.

The measure was sent to the Senate on a 64-58 vote. A close vote is expected in the Senate.

The proposal calls for state-owned but privately operated casinos in Wyandotte County, either Sedgwick or Sumner counties in south-central Kansas, and either Crawford or Cherokee counties in southeast Kansas. It also would allow 2,200 slot machines distributed among three pari-mutuel racetracks, the Woodlands in Kansas City, Kan., Wichita Greyhound Park and the now-closed Camptown Greyhound Park in Frontenac.

Gambling proponents said the state could eventually receive $200 million per year from the casinos and tracks, providing needed revenue as government costs escalate while lawmakers refuse to increase taxes.

But opponents said the increased gambling would come with a large societal cost through more problem gamblers, leading to bankruptcies and broken families.

Nearly two dozen lawmakers spoke against the proposal on Monday.

"We have gone to the dark side," said Rep. Don Dahl, R-Hillsboro.

"The (gambling) industry is treating Kansas the way it does problem gamblers. It is promising us to be winners. It is handing us cash as we enter the door," said Rep. Forest Knox, R-Altoona.

The vote on Monday came after more than a dozen hours of debate on Friday and Saturday.

Kansas already has a state lottery and four Native American casinos operate in the northeast Kansas, but the state receives no revenue from those casinos.

Even lawmakers not especially in favor of gambling said the state was losing out on revenue from increased gambling operations in Missouri and Oklahoma.

Senate President Steve Morris, R-Hugoton, said the bill's prospects in the Senate were unknown at this time.

"We need to evaluate what's in the bill. We need to see where we are with the votes before we could really proceed," Morris said.

The bill to expand gambling in Kansas was approved by the House on a 64-58 vote. Here's how the local and area delegation voted:


Barbara Ballard, D-Lawrence

Paul Davis, D-Lawrence

Tom Holland, D-Baldwin City

Ann Mah, D-Topeka

Tom Sloan, R-Lawrence


Anthony Brown, R-Eudora

Lee Tafanelli, R-Ozawkie


deec 10 years, 11 months ago

Mine. My taxes doubles between 6/99 and 6/04. All my relatives in Bonner and Edwardsville's taxes doubled or more. The taxes in Leavenworth county went up as well. You are also mistaken about development in kck. There are lots of suburban style house being built in the inner city area. The developers, mostly the catholic church are collecting tax money to build these homes,nearly allof which are sitting empty with for sale signs out front. Yet they keep building more of them. The people of old kck don't go to the track area; they can't afford it with the tax increases and inflated bpu utility rates. the inner city continues to rot while all the resources are diverted to the sprawl. and no one has addressed the crooked financing that was orchestrated. again, do some reasearch.

deec 10 years, 11 months ago

It seems pretty silly to put a casino in wyco, when the kcmo casinos are just a few minutes away. Why not put one in northwest ks where there's no competition from Missouri and Oklahoma?

Raider 10 years, 11 months ago

Yeah, why put one in WyCo b/c there are casinos across the river. Well, let's see why. Because people on the KS side are spending their money in Missouri. That's why. Keep out dollars on this side of the line.

Ken Miller 10 years, 11 months ago

Here's a note to all of you excited would-be in-state gamblers:

Stick on 17; hit on 16.

Don't roll snakeeyes.

Don't tell your spouse.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 10 years, 11 months ago

More revenues on the backs of the weak. This is what we get for our failure to bring legitimate commerce to Kansas.

deec 10 years, 11 months ago

And they will continue to do so. Wyco is considered the pimple on the hind end of the KC metro by the rest of the metro. The only reason they want it there is to prop up the failing Woodlands track and as more gov't subsidizing for the Village West boondoggle.

Raider 10 years, 11 months ago

Village West boondoggle? Hmmm, let's see; Nebraska Furniture Mart, The Legends, the T-Bones, the Speedway. All of those things seem to be huge draws, and have been very beneficial to WyCo and the state. Yup, sure sounds like a boondoggle to me.

I would assume the state run casinos in WyCo would go in that area. I doubt they would put them in downtown KCK.

Godot 10 years, 11 months ago

Only thing wrong is it is owned by the state.

deec 10 years, 11 months ago

Very beneficial to whom? The original property owners whose land was stolen under eminent domain and given to the developers? The residents of the eastern half of wyco whose taxes and utility rates continue to rise precipitously to finance the infrastructure and corruption of western sprawl? The residents of old kck whose roads and schools are allowed to deteriorate? The taxpayers of wyco whose rates doubled since 1999 while the boondoggle businesses enjoy sales and property tax breaks? I guess the suburbanites in western wyco benefit; now they don't have to drive a whole ten minutes to get their Target, Old Navy and chain restaurant fix in Shawnee.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 10 years, 11 months ago

I'm talking about addictions. Every time gambling enters a community, you start reading about "ordinary" folks embezzeling money from work, etc. Church secretaries running off with the collection plate. Then, there are the perpetually poor who turn to lotteries, etc. as their "way out". Gambling is a shell game. At its core, it preys on the weak, on those who are looking for quick thrills and fixes. Remember that preacher in TN who got shot by his wife? They had a huge money problems because they got caught by one of those Nigerian e-mail scams: another example of an "enterprize" that preys on people who are so desperate for easy answers to life's complex issues that they'll fall for silly scams. Legalized gaming uses the same marketing message: "we'll give you back more than you put in... WE PROMISE". I'm not a fan of any of the legalized vices. They are successful because people are weak, and driven by their desperation. A 99% payout on a slot machine means you will get 99 cents for every dollar you put in; yet you'll meet people all over KC who will SWEAR that they MAKE money every time they gamble. Then, when you ask them why they don't gamble for a living... well, they always have a reason, but NOT because they lose money at gaming!

I worked in auto finance for 10 years. When our repo guys were between runs, they'd always check the parking lots at the casinos. Invariably, they'd nail 2-3 cars a week that way. People weren't paying on their car notes because they were blowing their paychecks at the casinos. That is what I call making money on the backs of the weak. It preys on the vulnerable; just like prostitution and crack.

It doesn't make me proud to know that I'll be driving on roads and sending my kids to schools funded by the weakness of vulnerable people.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 10 years, 11 months ago

deec keeps saying "boondoggle".

Ignito Montoya: "I don't think you know what that word means".

deec 10 years, 11 months ago Main Entry: boondoggle 2 : a wasteful or impractical project or activity often involving graft Do a little research, will ya? The theft of one of the properties went all the way to the Supreme Court. And no, I had no personal financial interest in the land theft. I did live in wyco for 6 years and witnessed the deterioration and neglect of kck while the $ flowed westward. I also lived in Bonner 1970-1975 the first time kck tried the consolidation scam through a massive land grab of all the unincorporated parts of the county. Bonner and Edwardsville fought back. I have relatives south and east of the boondoggle who will undoubtably soon lose their properties that have been in the family since the 1950s due to the exhorbitant tax increases engendered by their proximity to the boondoggle.

BigDog 10 years, 11 months ago

deec - The taxpayers of wyco whose rates doubled since 1999 while the boondoggle businesses enjoy sales and property tax breaks?

What rates in Wyandotte County have doubled since 1999? Proof?

I have had various people in Wyandotte County tell me how their property taxes have decreased in the last 5 years. I would like to see proof if they are feeding me bull*#@%.

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