- Man accused of setting fire to Delta bar; posted photos of it burning on Facebook (9/17/17)5
- McClure man accused of leaving children in hot truck while gambling in casino (9/19/17)1
- Say Cheese: The story behind the famous sandwiches at the East Perry Fair (9/22/17)
- New boutique store advocates for special-needs people (9/19/17)
- Anne Limbaugh dies, leaves legacy of caring (9/22/17)
- Planet Fitness to anchor Town Plaza shopping center (9/18/17)2
- Former major-league slugger Darryl Strawberry to speak at La Croix (9/20/17)
- Mo. conservation agents help fight fires in western U.S. (9/15/17)
- Retailer may come to Jackson; rezoning needed first (9/17/17)2
- Young entrepreneurs add fresh ideas, unique offerings for area market (9/18/17)
Two Cape Girardeau businessmen have been working behind the scenes since the 1990s, buying properties in downtown Cape Girardeau and dreaming one day of bringing a casino, a hotel and related development to downtown.
Since earlier this year, Ameristar and Pinnacle Entertainment, two of the largest casino operators in Missouri, have led a petition drive to get an initiative on the November ballot that would impose a ban on new casinos in the state, thereby eliminating future competition and repealing the $500 individual loss limit currently imposed on Missouri's gamblers. In return, the tax on casino profits would increase to 21 percent from the current 20 percent. The initiative is being called the "Schools First Elementary and Secondary Education Funding Initiative."
Last week, the Missouri Gaming Commission voted to impose a statewide freeze on new riverboat applications until voters have their say. The ballot measure is being checked by election officials to see if petitioners collected enough signatures.
David Knight and Jim Riley, the two Cape Girardeau businessmen, have put a lot of energy into this project. But they knew going in that government regulations would be a major factor. In the end, though, it will be up to voters statewide to determine if it's a good idea to eliminate competition and the individual loss limits.