Around-the-clock gambling will not be allowed at Illinois casinos. Illinois Gaming Board Chairman Aaron Jaffe announced the request for 24-hour operating hours had been denied at the board’s meeting Thursday, but did not offer any explanation for the decision. Supporters of the extended gaming hours had argued casinos need that extra revenue to make up for losses in recent years.
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“We’re very disappointed in the board’s decision,” said Tom Swoik, president of the Illinois Casino Gaming Association. “We think it was an opportunity to keep some money in the state of Illinois.” Opponents charged that any revenue from those extra hours would come from compulsive gamblers. Under law, Illinois casinos can stay open for no more than 22 hours a day, but they get to decide which two hours they’re closed.