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Carthage to allow Video Gambling


The Carthage city council has changed its position on gambling.

Aldermen have overturned a century-old ban on gambling to allow video poker machines. The state now allows these machines.

Mayor Jim Nightingale says the owner of a bar, the Wood Inn, asked for the change.

He says, “We're really not promoting gambling. Right now there's video poker machines in most of the bards and clubs that are licensed by Illinois. But they're supposed to be for amusement only.”

The change will allow the city to receiive five percent of the revenue generated by the machines.

Nightingale doesn't think that will be very much money because of the lack of local interest.

He says, “I don't think the clubs were actually interested because of the rules and regulations. So we're probably only going to have one (license).”

No other businesses or clubs have shown any interest. Nightingale says they feel the licensing procedure is cumbersome and not worth the returns.
Nightingale says there was no organized opposition to gambling although he did receive a few phone calls from residents wanted to keep the ban in place.

Nightingale asked the city council to consider video gaming two months ago. While researching the city's ordinances, the city attorney found a ban on gambling from 1908. The city council took no action at the time since there was no interest in video gambling.