- Associated Press - Thursday, December 22, 2016

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (AP) - A state lawmaker wants to clear the way for a casino in Terre Haute.

Republican Sen. Jon Ford is proposing legislation to move unused games held by the Rising Sun casino to Terre Haute. A new casino would create more than 1,200 jobs and millions in taxes for Indiana and local government, Ford told the Tribune-Star (https://bit.ly/2h5m7lf ).

The Rising Sun casino now operates in southeastern Indiana, near Cincinnati. Alex Stolyar of Full House Resorts, which operates Rising Sun, said Terre Haute could be a “prime market.”

“The opportunity is there, so I am creating a bill as a compromise that would keep the existing games in Rising Sun, allow that tax base to be maintained there and bring these unused state assets into a revenue producing environment,” Ford said.

According to the newspaper, Terre Haute would receive more than $7.3 million in projected annual wagering taxes, and Vigo County would receive more than $2.7 million. The new casino would also generate more than $925,000 for other Indiana counties that don’t have a casino.

Stolyar said the city’s location near the Illinois border could attract players from that state. He said he wants to stay a step ahead of any plans for a casino in Danville, Illinois.

Legislation to expand gambling in Illinois this year fell through.

Stolyar said that if legislation is approved by the Indiana General Assembly for a new casino in Terre Haute, it would take six to nine months for design, with an additional 12 to 18 months needed for construction.

Ford said he plans to file legislation as soon as next week.

If approved, a Terre Haute casino could be ready in 2019.


Information from: Tribune-Star, https://www.tribstar.com

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