Voters approve Cedar Rapids casino proposal in Iowa
Linn County voters have approved the casino. Now the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission will decide if it gets built.
US.- Voters in Linn County, Iowa, have again voted yes to a casino in Cedar Rapids. About 55 per cent of voters approved the development in the referendum on this week’s ballot. However, the vote only approves the concept and doesn’t mean a casino will be built.
Approval of a specific facility still needs to come after application to the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission. The application will include plans for what a casino would look like and how it would benefit the community, but one of the first steps will be to figure out exactly where a casino would go.
Anne Parmley, president of the Linn County Gaming Association, said about the location: “Different locations bring about different sizes and different levels of opportunity. And so I think every location that might be available will be looked at and considered. There’s a strong desire to be in downtown Cedar Rapids.”
Parmley also stated: “Having the revenues that would be generated by this casino at their disposal to support operations, give them the opportunity to serve more citizens, the needs are expanding.”
Drew Skogman, a member of Cedar Rapids Development Group, said: “Voting yes on this referendum is about Linn County’s future”, and he continued: “Linn County is the largest county in Iowa without a gaming facility, and it’s time for us to receive the same economic stimulus that casinos bring to other counties in the state.”
Peninsula Pacific Entertainment would operate the casino. The company has granted the Linn County Gaming Association 8 per cent of net revenue, over double the 3 per cent required by the state.
Attempts to bring a casino to Cedar Rapids failed in 2014 and 2017. On both occasions, the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission said a casino would take away from other nearby casinos — there are 19 licensed casinos in Iowa.