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Kasich Gets More Money Out of Casino

13 June 2011 by admin

ohio-location-mapFor months, Ohio Governor John Kasich (R) has been speaking out against his state’s casinos, saying that they aren’t sharing enough of their revenue. He said that voters got a “raw deal” with the law passed in 2009 and wants to shake the casinos down for more money. Until now, the casinos have balked at his demands, but over the weekend one casino, Rock Ohio Caesars, has agreed to a deal with Kasich.

The specifics of the agreement have not been disclosed, but according to the Columbus Dispatch, Rock Ohio Caesars agreed to a “significant payout” for multiple years in addition to the licensing fees. According to Kasich, the agreement does not include a tax increase. Kasich as also been meeting with Penn National Gaming, but they walked away from the negotiation without reaching an agreement. Kasich issued a statement praising Rock Ohio Caesars for making “additional payments to benefit Ohioans” as well as for negotiating “in good faith and with a spirit of partnership.”

In 2009, Ohio voters approved a referendum allowing casinos and that referendum, passed into law, called for a 33% tax on the casinos as well as a one-time $50 million licensing fee. Though those numbers are set by law, Kasich wants to negotiate an increase on them in order to bring more money to the state, which is in debt.

Prior to reaching this agreement, Rock Ohio Caesars had halted construction of their casinos in Cincinnati and Cleveland due to the uncertainty. Penn National Gaming has one half-built casino in Toledo and another that recently began construction in Columbus. Kasich said that the hopes to reach a deal with Penn National soon.

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