Illinois Considering Allowing Gamblers to Smoke - The Best Online Casino Guide Blog
The state of Illinois wants people to be healthy and because of that concern, they banned smoking in public places back in 2008. They also want people to play at their casinos, because that brings in revenue for the state. The problem is that the two desires are in conflict with each other.
A lot of gamblers like to smoke while they play. Some find it relaxing and for others, it’s just a habit. In Illinois, you can’t smoke at any of their casinos. However, in neighboring states you can. For that reason, a lot of gamblers in Illinois have been crossing the state lines and playing in casinos located in Indiana, Missouri and Iowa. This is a problem for the Prairie State.
To solve the problem, some lawmakers want to reverse the policy on smoking in casinos. On Wednesday, the Illinois Senate will meet to debate a bill that would allow gamblers to smoke in the casinos. The bill already passed the House by a slim 62-52 margin. Governor Pat Quinn opposes the bill, but maybe not enough to veto it if it is passed by the Senate.
Kathy Drea, vice president for the American Lung Association, says it is discrimination. According to her, lifting the smoking ban for casinos says that the health of casino employees “isn’t worth the same as everyone else’s.”
Not everyone agrees. Representative Dan Burke voted for the smoking ban back in 2008. However, now he said that due to the “unintended consequences” of the ban, they should pass an amendment allowing smoking in the casinos. An estimated 20% of casino gamblers smoke, according to the American Gaming Association. That is a lot of money lost because of the ban. Of course, if the ban is lifted for casinos, you can bet that bars, which also cater to smokers, will challenge it as well.