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updated: 6/1/2012 8:55 PM

Park City casino could add 1,000 jobs, mayor says

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There are no clear plans yet for the proposed Park City casino in Lake County, but Mayor Steve Pannell has outlined expectations of adding 1,000 new jobs to the area.

Pannell was out of town Friday and unavailable for comment, but state Sen. Terry Link, a Waukegan Democrat and longtime advocate for a casino in Lake County, said once plans for a Waukegan casino fell through, nearby Park City was a natural choice.

"They were 100 percent in favor of it," Link said.

Waukegan lost a bid that went to Des Plaines, where the Rivers Casino opened last year.

The Park City casino is one of five included in a bill passed by the Illinois legislature just before it adjourned late Thursday. Gov. Pat Quinn, who opposed a similar gambling bill last year, has not said whether he will sign this one.

Lake County Administrator Barry Burton said the county in general supports a casino coming to the area.

However, Gurnee Mayor Kristina Kovarik expressed concern over the Park City location, saying the village of 10,000 does not have the infrastructure to adequately handle so much traffic.

"There's a better location in Lake County," she said, but would not name where that would be. "There are other plans that (would be) more conducive."

According to the legislation, a casino license in Lake County would cost $100,000, plus $12,500 per gaming position at the casino. After four years, the casino must pay the state 75 percent of the gross receipts of the most lucrative 12-month period of operation.

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