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Gambling Expansion Passes Illinois Senate! House Members Need to Hear From Us!

By May 23, 2017Illinois
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Legislators Plan to Balance the Budget on the Backs of the Impoverished Working Poor and Gambling Addicts!

State gambling expansion bill, Senate Bill 7, passed the Illinois Senate last Wednesday with a 33-24 vote.

SB 7 is now in the Illinois House Executive Committee and  is expected to move through the committee quickly and then to the House floor for a vote.

 This massive gambling expansion bill is sponsored by Illinois Senators Terry Link (D-Gurnee), Dave Syverson (R-Rockford), Mattie Hunter (D-Chicago) and Donne Trotter (D-Chicago).

Gambling is harmful to our citizens and does not pay off. Illinois Business Journal had an excellent article on this recently titled, “COUNTERPOINT: Should gambling be expanded in Illinois?” They made several excellent points, such as:

  • The costs associated with one pathological gambler are more than $13,000 per year. There are more than 12,000 people on the self-exclusion list at Illinois casinos.  These are gamblers who have admitted that their gambling is so out of control that they are willing to be arrested and lose all of their winnings if they are caught gambling in an Illinois casino.  The cost for these known gamblers is $156 million a year.
  • The National Academies of Science found that “Pathological gamblers engage in destructive behaviors; they commit crimes, they run up large debts, they damage relationships with family and friends, and they kill themselves.”
  • Gambling interests overestimate the amount of revenue from gambling and do not calculate the costs.  For every dollar gambling interests indicate is being contributed in taxes, it costs taxpayers $3 in social welfare, criminal justice, and regulatory costs, according to independent studies.

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner, eager to pass a budget deal at any cost, had this to say about gambling expansion in the state, “There is a grand bargain being negotiated. I believe new revenues through the casino are part of that grand bargain, and I’ve said I’m open to whatever package can move the needle to a balanced budget, and I’ve said I’m open to local control. So, the answer is, if that came as part of a package, I could be supportive of that.”

As reported in an earlier CWA of Illinois alert,  SB 7 would include a massive casino for Chicago, slot machines at Chicago Airports,  additional land-based casinos for Rockford, Danville, Lake County, South Suburbs of Chicago, Williamson County Winery, and at four racetracks and would allow progressive jackpots at casinos and video gambling establishments, would expand video gambling by doubling the maximum bet and more than doubling the jackpot and lower taxes on slot machines and table games and give tax breaks to racetracks and casino.

In addition, the Senate amended and approved legislation allowing the Illinois Racing Board to direct $500,000 from its budget to purses at the state’s racetracks.

There are only two weeks left before state lawmakers adjourn for the summer; therefore, we expect this gambling bill to move quickly.

Take Action:

  1. Contact your state representative today. Respectfully, but firmly, tell him/her “NO MORE casinos!  NO MORE slots!  NO MORE tax breaks for the gaming industry! Vote NO on SB 7!   If you know who your representative is, click here to find their contact information. If you don’t know who your representative is, click here to find out their name and contact information based on your address.
  2. If you have not already contacted Gov. Rauner concerning this issue, please do so.
  3. If time allows, contact each member of the House Executive Committee.

Note:  When contacting your legislators be sure to tell them that you are a member of Concerned Women for America of Illinois.

Pray that:

  • The 100th General Assembly and Gov. Bruce Rauner will see that this legislation will only hurt Illinois citizens.
  • Pastors and Christians would become actively involved in public policy.
  • The Lord would convict the legislators of past wrong doings concerning over spending and find honorable ways to fix it.
  • That SB 7 – Gambling Expansion Bill would not pass in the Illinois House and become law.
  • Forward this alert to everyone you know – especially your pastor and members of your congregation.

 “Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and He will give you everything you need.”  (Matthew 6:33)

 “Gambling is the child of avarice, the brother of iniquity, and the father of mischief.” – George Washington

“Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.” (1 Timothy 6:9-10)

Debbie Leininger
CWA of Illinois

Take the next step. Get involved with CWA of Illinois.

  • Join a Prayer/Action chapter. Contact me today to find out if there is a CWA chapter in your area.
  • Please donate to CWA of Illinois. Our state is run exclusively by volunteers and supported completely through donations.
  • If someone forwarded you this e-alert, and you would like to be on our e-mail list, contact me and I will be happy to add you.