The Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Gov Bruce Rauner are both wanting the same thing, but getting a Chicago casino up and running is facing a few obstacles, however they are obstacles that can be overcome. There are of course existing casinos in Chicago and race tracks that would like to expand their gambling offering, and the issue over the years has been finding a proposal for a Chicago city owned casino that suits all.
Mayor Emanuel wants a casino that is fully owned by the city, with all taxes and profits going into the city's coffers with the Mayor’s spokeswoman Kelley Quinn stating that, "A city-owned casino would ensure that all profits are reinvested in Chicago and Illinois residents instead of a private, for-profit business. Given that Chicagoans are facing a substantial tax increase needed to meet the nearly $600 million additional payment for police and fire pension funds, a city-owned casino is critical to protecting our taxpayers while securing the retirements of Chicago's first responders."
Discussions have begun as to a new proposal with Governor Rauner, although being generally against gambling, fully acknowledging the tax revenue and job creation that a new Chicago casino would bring. He puts it quite simply that he is open to the idea however wishes to make sure that it’s the right decision for Chicago residents.
Gov Rauner is under some pressure to assist Emanuel in solving Chicago’s financial problems and he is in no way against the building of a city owned casino saying that, "I will be very open-minded to working closely with the city and with communities around the state to discuss this gaming issue and try to come to some resolution fairly promptly."
There are two bills being proposed, with one arguing for a huge building with revenue being shared between the city and the state, and another bill proposing 5 new casinos in various Chicago suburbs. As is always the case when gambling hits the Chicago city agenda there is much to discuss however it’s hoped that the latest round of meetings will at least move things forward in some way.