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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Existing Gambling Bans Won't Apply to Video Gaming Under Proposed Legislation


In 2009, the Illinois General Assembly passed the Video Gaming Act.  That Act legalized video gaming in Illinois and authorized the Video Gaming Board to adopt licensing standards and other regulations for video gaming. 

Section 27 of the Video Gaming Act currently provides that municipalities can prohibit video gaming within their corporate limits by ordinance.  Some municipalities have pre-existing gambling bans in their municipal codes that prohibit all gambling within the community.  The Video Gaming Board has taken the position that these pre-existing gambling bans apply to video gaming, meaning that these municipalities need not adopt a specific ordinance to ban video gaming.  That will change, however, if House Bill 4466 is adopted.  

HB 4466 would amend Section 27 of the Video Gaming Act concerning municipal gambling bans.  Under the new language, a municipality can only ban video gaming by adoption of an ordinance after July 13, 2009.  Consequently, pre-existing gambling bans would not apply to video gaming (except in Chicago).  The proposed legislation also preempts home rule. 

If this bill is enacted, a municipality that wants to ban video gaming within its corporate boundaries will need to adopt a specific ordinance to prohibit video gaming rather than rely on a comprehensive gambling ban enacted before 2009.

Post Authored by Julie Tappendorf, Ancel Glink.

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