Rep. Eberhart: Working to bring live table games to Indiana racinos

Posted by: Hannah Carlock  | Friday, February 3, 2017 10:10 am

This year, I am bringing legislation before the General Assembly that could have a great economic impact on our community and state. I’ve authored a bill that would allow for Indiana Grand Racing and Casino and Hoosier Park Racing and Casino to offer live table games.

In 2015, a law was passed allowing table games at Indiana racinos in 2021. My proposal would fast track this timeline by repealing the law passed in 2015 to allow table games at the two local racinos by the end of this year.

Currently, Indiana Grand has 2,200 slots and e-table games including blackjack, roulette, craps and poker. The Shelby County casino also offers the only seasonal Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse Racing in Indiana along with the Indiana Derby, which is growing in national popularity with every passing year. Adding live table games would help increase revenue, especially as we compete with neighboring states already offering live table games.

Last year, Indiana Grand brought nearly $61.2 million to the state’s general fund, and an additional $7.3 million to Shelby County. The funds given to the county are from the county Slot Machine Wage Tax. These monies are dispersed by the Shelby County Auditor and have been used for projects like free college to Shelby County students attending the local Ivy Tech, and recently paving 71 miles of county roads and upgrading 24 culverts and five bridges.

Right now, we are contending with the riverboat and resort casinos in Indiana offering live games and casinos being added in surrounding states. Just by the addition of live table games at Indiana Grand, we would attract a new audience of visitors to our area, and next year bring the projected revenue of $17.9 million to the state from both racinos. These table games may even boost the conversation of expanding the casino area to a resort setting with hotels and dining options, bringing more jobs and revenue to our community.

Why wait another four years when we can build on what we currently have? Our racino is a very unique destination, providing jobs and increased revenue for the state and our community. Right now is the time to capitalize on this economic opportunity.

Please share your thoughts by contacting me by phone at 317-232-9793 or emailing h57@iga.in.gov.

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State Rep. Sean Eberhart (R-Shelbyville) represents House District 57,
which includes Shelby County and portions of Bartholomew and Hancock counties.

A high-resolution photo of Eberhart can be downloaded by clicking here.