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Gaming analyst to Chicago: Time to get moving

Friday, Aug 14, 2020

* Mitchell Armentrout at the Sun-Times

Although Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s opening roll for a Chicago casino came up snake-eyes, a new tax structure keeps her in the game.

But it’s too early to tell whether she winds up making her point or sevens out.

That’s according to the Las Vegas consulting firm that previously declared that the “exceptionally onerous” taxes originally written into state law last summer would mean no dice for the city as it tried to attract developers to the table for a shot at the long-sought megacasino.

Union Gaming Analytics now says the revised Chicago structure that passed the Legislature during a shortened spring legislative session in May is “significantly more palatable for potential developers,” lowering the effective tax rate on gaming revenue from a whopping 72% to about 40%.

That should be “attractive enough” to draw proposals from gaming developers — and the city should start soliciting information from them, analyst Grant Govertsen wrote for Union Gaming in a report released this week.

There’s more to this story, so click here.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

6 Comments
  1. - Annonin' - Friday, Aug 14, 20 @ 10:11 am:

    Da
    And they pay this guy real money to do this? Amazing. Bet if the taxes were cut to zip the investment would be better. Still wondering why the fist analysis wasn’t tucked away until an RFP was issued just to see who would have wanted to come to Chicago. We’ll never know.


  2. - Angry Republican - Friday, Aug 14, 20 @ 10:17 am:

    How are casinos supposed to operate during Covid-19? That $1B revenue estimate is laughable.


  3. - iggy - Friday, Aug 14, 20 @ 10:49 am:

    By the time Chicago finally does get a casino it will look like Hill Valley in Back to the future 2 where Biff is in charge.


  4. - walker - Friday, Aug 14, 20 @ 11:02 am:

    Generally with Annonin’ on this.

    Waiting to see if a politically-connected Illinois investor gets the benefit of the lower tax rates.


  5. - Occam - Friday, Aug 14, 20 @ 11:03 am:

    The key question will be: To what extent will gaming operators modify their proposals downward due to their permanently lowered expectations of tourist/conventioneer visits to the city in the furture?


  6. - Enviro - Friday, Aug 14, 20 @ 3:47 pm:

    The Covid 19 pandemic and Chicago safety planning must be the priority now. The casino should remain on hold. This would not be a good time to negotiate a casino deal.


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