Casino Initiative On Oregon Ballot

By Rob Scott

MEDFORD, Ore. — This November, Oregon voters will be able to decide on a proposal that would allow the state constitution to be amended and commercial casinos to possibly be built.

A petition with more than 115,000 valid signatures made its way to Oregon Secretary of State Kate brown’s desk earlier this month. The signatures were verified late last week.

Two Oregon men from Lake Oswego were the chief petitioners for the initiative that would allow for commercial casinos to potentially open throughout the state. However, it was close; the petition had only 237 signatures – more than what was required to make the ballot.

The non-tribal commercial casinos would come with some restrictions. Among them are the requirement for Oregon voters to approve each casino and the requirement that each commercial casino not be within 60 miles of a casino on tribal lands.

With the possibility of more casinos, the possibility for more people that will need help with gambling addiction could increase as well. A portion of revenue from the Oregon lottery goes to problem gambling treatment programs.

Each commercial casino would pay 25% of its adjusted gross revenue to the state of Oregon. According to the initiative that money would be used for education, job growth and protecting the environment.