“Fairmount Park is a vital source of both jobs and entertainment in the Metro East,” said Stuart. “I have been working on this legislation for a long time now, and I am excited about the potential of ongoing negotiations to protect local jobs and save live racing at Fairmount Park.”
Stuart’s House Bill 3099 would allow Fairmount Park to install 150 video gaming terminals (VGTs) on its grounds. Under this proposal, racetracks would retain half of the earnings from the VGTs, whereas the other half would go toward the associated purse account to be split between race winners. This additional source of revenue will give racetracks the opportunity to offer competitive purses and attract more racers to the area. VGTs would be accessible during regular operation hours for the race track, and it is estimated that they could bring in $2 million per year in additional purse money.
“Hundreds of employees count on Fairmount Park for their livelihood, and rather than talking about shutting down the track, we need to be considering ways to help them grow and expand the number of live racing days,” continued Stuart. “A new source of revenue could not only ensure Fairmount Park stays open, but help it return to being a hub for economic development in the Metro East.”