It’s been a long time coming but the state is close to seeing the first video gambling machines installed and up and running. Scientific Games, who is handling the design, implementation and administration of the computer system that will link corner bars to the state gaming board, expects video gambling up and running come August 1st.
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“Our main goal is around the first of August, all the establishments that we have installed over the June and July time frame, we would enable all of those establishments at the same time, so on August 1st around the same time, we would basically flip the switch and everybody would be brought up for gaming,” said Scott Stewart with Scientific Games to gaming board members last month. A handful of establishments properly licensed are expected to go online in mid-July to allow the company to test the system. Those establishments will be close to Scientific Games network control offices in Wooddale.
How many establishments will go online August 1st is still anyone’s guess according to gaming board Chairman Aaron Jaffe. He says for every properly filed out application for a gambling license, there’s another that isn’t. “You know, we get a thousand applications for establishments...and half of them are not filed out properly and then you take the other half and they are in places where they are not supposed to be,” Jaffe said. Video gambling was a proposition passed in 2009 to help fund the state’s $31 billion public works program. Communities have the option to “opt-out.”