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updated: 7/24/2012 10:52 PM

Carpentersville board delays video gambling vote again

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Carpentersville again postponed a vote on video gambling Tuesday night because there were not enough trustees in attendance to make a decision.

Two weeks ago, the board voted 3-2 to bring video gambling to town, but that wasn't enough because financial matters need four yes votes. Trustees Brad McFeggan and Don Burroway and President Ed Ritter approved video gambling, while trustees Pat Schultz and Kay Teeter rejected it.

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That time, trustee Doug Marks missed the meeting and trustee Paul Humpfer arrived after the vote.

As a result, the board postponed the vote to Tuesday.

But things didn't get resolved then, either.

Teeter was on a business trip, Marks was unavailable, and Humpfer was running a regional Little League tournament. Humpfer had been expected to attend the meeting, but it ended before he could arrive.

Because of the absences, the board also couldn't take a vote on a plan to replace trees that have been infested by the emerald ash borer.

Tuesday's meeting was over in less than an hour and at the very end, trustees were stalling for time in hopes that Humpfer would arrive.

Ritter can't remember the last time three trustees did not attend a meeting.

"Sometimes it's just circumstances -- nobody planned on not being there, it just worked out that way," Ritter said. "This is a once in a very long while occurrence to not have three people."

Eight business owners attended Tuesday's meeting, pleading with the board to bring video gambling machines to town. Several neighboring communities recently approved it, including Huntley, Hampshire and Fox River Grove. Merchants said they feared gamblers would take their business and money to other towns if the village didn't approve video gambling. They also said they need another revenue stream, especially in this economy.

Mitch Shackelton, administrator of Moose Lodge No. 1958 in Carpentersville, said the lodge would be forced to close after more than 50 years if trustees vote against the measure because it's hard enough making ends meet with existing revenue streams.

"If we can't donate to the community ... then it's just a bar, and we don't want to just be a bar," Shackelton said in a later interview. "We want to be able to help the community,"

Resident Geraldine Winfrey asked the board to keep video gambling out of town because her late husband lost their retirement and savings to his own gambling addiction.

The board postponed the video gambling issue until its Aug. 7 meeting.

"So we'll have to do it all again in two weeks, which we will do," Shackelton said, adding that he'll attend the meeting with his nine-member board. "It'd be good to get it over with so we know what we're dealing with."

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