GIRARD, KS.--- Crawford County commissioners met this morning to discuss gaming facilities in Southeast Kansas. Gaming has been an ongoing discussion in Southeast Kansas for a while now. Crawford County already has legislation that allows them to build gaming facilities in the county. However, the details of that legislation is where the problem lies. Currently, it would cost a gaming corporation $250 million to build a facility in Southeast Kansas. So far, no corporations have been willing to invest that amount of money in this area.
"We'd like to see that lowered to make it more appeasing for someone to invest in our area," said Tom Moody, Crawford County Commissioner.
The other issue: The required percentage that the gaming facility would have to pay back to the state is also too high. Commissioners and state reps are now working to get both of those numbers lowered.
"It's going to be hard for them to pay their employees and pay the state and all this, without lowering that percentage where they have a little more money coming in," said Bob Grant, KS. State Representative
Camptown Dog Track in Frontenac closed in 2000 after not being able to expand their gaming opportunities. County leaders and state reps would like to see that facility reopen, but this time it would have to include other gaming, like slot machines.
"If you have the dog track open, and the casino in one of the counties, then you're going to get businesses flowing through it. So it's going to be a benefit and plus it's going to provide jobs," said Moody.
At the meeting, a lobbyist proposed that Crawford County get proper representation to gain support from representatives in Topeka. The lobbyist also discussed some possible changes to the gaming laws in the upcoming 2014 legislative session, which may have an affect on Southeast Kansas.
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