News From Terre Haute, Indiana

January 21, 2013

Indiana lawmakers looking to stem casinos’ decline

By TOM DAVIES
Associated Press

INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana lawmakers are proposing to cut riverboat casino taxes and allow the floating gambling halls to move onto land to help them face growing competition from neighboring states.

A state Senate committee is expected to take up a bill this week overhauling casino taxes, although estimates aren’t available on how much money might be involved.

The debate comes as Indiana is projecting its casino tax revenue will drop 15 percent over the next three years from what was collected last year.

Republican Sen. Phil Boots of Crawfordsville says changes are needed to keep Indiana’s 10 riverboat casinos “in the game.” But many state lawmakers are leery of supporting steps perceived as allowing an expansion of gambling.

New casinos in Ohio, Michigan and Illinois are providing competition for Indiana’s casinos.