Gov. Pritzker in favor of legalizing sports betting

Local News

In his budget address Wednesday, Gov. J.B. Pritzker addressed many issues the state is facing.  He also spoke about some ideas he has of potential revenue sources, one being sports betting.

Pritzker believes that by legalizing sports betting, the state would be able to receive more than $200 million from taxes and fees.

Peoria Off Track Betting believes this could bring even more customers and revenue to their business.

The governor announced that he wants Illinois to become the first Midwest state to legalize sports betting.  

“If we do it this year and become the first state in the Midwest to move on this initiative, we can realize more than $200 million from sports betting fees and taxes in FY 2020,” said Pritzker in his budget address.

The manager of Peoria Off Track Betting believes this could bring even more customers and revenue to their business.

“A lot of our customers that come in here love to watch sports as well as do the horce races.  So it should bring a lot more customer base as well as a lot more business for us so we’re pretty excited about that,” said Nikki Safford of Peoria Off Track Betting.

Being connected to a sports bar, Safford says the move would make the two businesses a great destination.

“They have a lot of sports events that go on, so that brings in business for us. So having sports betting would actually bring in more business for us as well as bring in more business for the Bull Pen,” said Safford.

She added that customers have been hoping for this for a long time:

“We have a lot of them that have been asking, ‘When it is going to be passed?  When is it going to come to OTB? Is it going to come to OTB?’ A lot of our customers have actually said ‘Hey you should bring this in, cause it’s going to bring in a lot of business.'” 

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