Pence lobbies against Indiana gambling expansion - 13 WTHR Indianapolis

Pence lobbies against Indiana gambling expansion

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INDIANAPOLIS -

Governor Mike Pence is asking lawmakers not to approve an expansion of gambling amid pressure from new casinos in bordering states.

Pence told reporters Tuesday that he has concerns about the industry's effort to bring the state's riverboat casinos on land, add live table games at the two horse racing tracks and approve portable gambling devices.

Supporters of the new measures sought by Indiana's casino industry say they're necessary to keep pace with new competition from states including Ohio and Illinois. They also say the proposals don't constitute an expansion of gambling.

Gaming in Indiana is big business. It may have dropped from third to fourth in the nation in 2012, but it still touts staggering numbers: $500 million in charitable gaming and $2.6 billion in casino gaming.

Neighboring states are now threatening those numbers. Legislation before the Indiana General Assembly is an attempt to curb the threat. It is asking lawmakers to allow the state's two racinos in Anderson and Shelbyville to introduce live tables.

Pence has previously said he supports keeping Indiana's gambling options at the status quo. This is the first time he has said he's actively asking lawmakers to vote against any expansion.

Gaming in Indiana is big business. It may have dropped from third to fourth in the nation in 2012, but it still touts staggering numbers: $500 million in charitable gaming and $2.6 billion in casino gaming.

Neighboring states are now threatening those numbers. Legislation before the Indiana General Assembly is an attempt to curb the threat. It is asking lawmakers to allow the state's two racinos in Anderson and Shelbyville to introduce live tables.

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