Advocates renew push for Walker's Bluff casino - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Advocates renew push for Walker's Bluff casino

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- A group of people supporting an expansion of Walker's Bluff make their case to state lawmakers.

The House gaming committee held a hearing today on possible expansion.

Lawmakers are considering some new casino licenses and Walker's Bluff is among the applicants.

Jackson County Board Chairman John Rendleman said the expansion would help turn the 

"Our businesses are closing and our people are leaving. Approval of this gaming license and construction of a modern casino and hotel in our region would be good news. Unlike a state handout for a new prison, or restart a prison, this project would signify that private enterprise is investing in our region."

Lawmakers warned the group that casino revenues are down and bringing a casino may not be the answer to the area's woes.

Herrin Mayor Steve Frattini said it would be an economic boon for southern Illinois.

"I think its important to realize in this proposition, that we're talking about much more than just a casino stand-alone proposition," Frattini said. "We're talking about a resort complex with many other components."

A committee rejected the gaming expansion bill shortly before the spring session ended in May.

The fall veto session begins next month.

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