Palatine takes "wait-and-see" stance on video gambling
After inquiries from several businesses interested in installing the machines, Palatine officials have decided to take a "wait-and-see" approach to video gambling.
The village council this week said it will wait at least a year before reconsidering Palatine's current ban.
"It was clear from (the council) that they're not going to lift anything until they see what happens in other towns," Deputy Village Manager Mike Jacobs said. "They want to see how it plays out in other communities."
Video gambling went live last month at 65 licensed locations with 278 gaming terminals throughout the state. The state passed the Video Gaming Act legalizing it more than three years ago.
In municipalities that allow video gambling, the machines are limited to licensed retail establishments where alcohol is served, as well as certain fraternal and veterans organizations. Licensed truck stops on at least three acres that have a convenience store and diesel fuel islands also are eligible. Under state statute, municipalities receive 5 percent of the revenue each terminal generates.
Palatine's ordinance will prohibit even the American Legion from getting the video poker and slot machines, regardless of the Illinois Gaming Board's decision on whether to grant the organization a license. The Legion has a pending application with the state agency.
"The village still has a local regulation," Jacobs said. "Just because the state permits it doesn't mean our code does."
The council's informal decision to keep the status quo in place for now doesn't affect an earlier update of the village's liquor code to allow for pull-tabs, which are chances to win money sold by charitable organizations.
Councilman Brad Helms said officials won't reconsider the ban until they're "comfortable" with the idea of video gambling in Palatine.
"We just want to be able to get back to (businesses) with an answer as to what is our stance, where we're going to be with this," Helms said.
Councilman Aaron Del Mar also reiterated that no one has a desire to change that stance.
"We are all in concurrence that we would prohibit video gaming," he said.