Vote "Yes" for Linn County Gaming License on Nov. 2

Oct 18, 2021

In 2013, Linn County voters overwhelming approved gaming in Linn County. That vote had a sunset of eight years, which makes 2021 a renewal year for a gaming referendum. The renewal vote is a legislative requirement.

A vote “yes” on this county-wide referendum gives Linn County the opportunity to go back before the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission and ask for the approval of a gaming license. Many people were disappointed when the commission turned down Cedar Rapids’ previous casino proposals, but two things have changed since then:

1) Nebraska recently passed gaming, which will have a significant impact on the western border casinos in Iowa, primarily those in Council Bluffs. For 30 years, three Council Bluffs casinos have benefited from the Omaha market, but with increased competition across the river in Nebraska, the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission may be open to new locations to make up for lost revenue there.

2) The makeup of the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission itself has changed and now has all new members. This poses an opportunity that the commission will take a fresh look at a Linn County license.

As voters weigh in on whether to keep the option open for a possible casino in Cedar Rapids, advocates for gambling in Linn County have sweetened the pot by increasing the commitment for non-profits. The casino advocates have agreed to share 8% of the casino’s revenue with local non-profit organizations. As many know, the non-profit community was hit hard last year due to COVID-19 and the derecho. The proposed 8% revenue share is a significant increase from what was proposed in 2013, and higher than what most Iowa casinos give back to their communities.

The gaming referendum is measure G on local ballots. Recognizing the positive economic development a casino would bring to the region, the Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance encourages you to vote “yes” for this referendum.

This message is paid for by the Cedar Rapids Metro Economic Alliance, 501 First St. SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401. The executive director of the Economic Alliance is Doug Neumann. This message is not authorized by any candidate, candidate’s committee or ballot issue committee.

Economic Alliance contact information:

319.398.5317 •

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