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updated: 4/17/2013 12:12 AM

Video gambling to stay in Sugar Grove

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Sugar Grove trustees Tuesday followed through on their promise to abide by the decision of voters on whether the village should continue to allow video gambling.

They declined to ban it.

"I'm fine with it," said Trustee Kevin Geary, who had suggested last summer that the village put the matter to a referendum. He has said he was "on the fence" about the matter and would abide by what voters decided in the advisory referendum April 9.

No other trustee had anything to say.

Cliff Barker, chaplain of the Sons of the American Legion auxiliary, said the Sugar Grove American Legion post turned on its three video gambling machines at 2 p.m. April 10.

"They have been busy. Our crowd is definitely coming back," he said.

The post is open to members every day, and to the public Thursday through Sunday. Saturday night was one of its busiest, even without a planned event, he said. "We'll see (how it goes) at the smelt fry Saturday," he said.

There have been no issues with minors, or confrontations with users, Barker said.

"Everybody is acting like adults, and it is going well," he said.

Twenty-one percent of registered voters voted. Almost 52 percent said "yes."

The American Legion had asked the village to allow video gambling, with representatives saying it needed the revenue from the machines to survive. Some trustees, including Mari Johnson, also thought allowing video gambling would allow Sugar Grove businesses to be on equal footing with businesses just outside its borders in the unincorporated area of Kane County, as well as nearby Elburn and North Aurora, which allow video gambling.

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