Video poker could be available in your town by the end of the year and if your town is Hardin, in Calhoun County, you could be among the first to play. The Hardin Village Board recently amended an ordinance that outlaws video gaming machines, unless they comply with rules under the Illinois Video Gaming Act. The new state law takes effect August 1.
Lawmakers legalized the extended gaming back in 2009 and John Schomberg, with the governor's office, says thousands of locations will be up by the end of of this year. Video poker was passed to help pay for the 31-billion dollar capital construction program. The state began accepting applications for licenses back in April. But some question whether it will bring in the revenue originally anticipated because more than 150 towns have chosen not to offer the gaming. However, towns like Hardin and others are taking another look at the rules as local business and fraternal organizations appeal to them in an effort to boost business.