Its been well documented that the driving force behind the effort to remove the $500 loss limit by means of initiative petition is being financed by the casino industry. The group calls themselves Yes for Schools First yet they have received no financial support from any educational system in the entire state. The St Louis Business Journal explains:
Casino companies Ameristar Casinos and Pinnacle Entertainment each donated $250,000 in the second quarter to a group working to quash Missouri’s gambling loss-limits law, according to a filing Tuesday with the Missouri Ethics Commission.
The Missouri Gaming Association also gave $12,948 in in-kind donations to the Yes For Schools First Coalition, the group lobbying for a November referendum to end the state’s loss limit of $500 per two hours of gambling, according to the filing.
To date, Ameristar (Nasdaq: ASCA), which has a casino in St. Charles, has donated $1.21 million to the coalition, and Pinnacle (NYSE: PNK), which owns Lumière Place and President Casino in St. Louis, gave $1.19 million, according to the filing.
So even in the latest round of financial contribution to the coalition, Ameristar and Pinnacle provided another $500,000. The only other money being contributed is from the Missouri Gaming Association who lobbies for casinos. Lets just call this campaign what it really is; a deceptive, pro casino effort to expand gambling. Its should more appropriately be called – Yes for Casinos First!
The Turner Report – Casinos pour money into loss-limit measure