Tourism experts testify on potential Chicago casino

May 11, 2015

Tourism industry officials say a Chicago casino could generate much-needed revenue along with sparking economic development in the city. 

Choose Chicago, the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, and hotel associations, testified before a lawmaker panel Monday about gambling expansion plans. It's the second such hearing this month and comes as Illinois legislators face a May 31 budget deadline to close a roughly $6 billion revenue gap. 

In recent days, there's been a renewed focus on finding more funding streams after the Illinois Supreme Court found a 2013 law attempting to overhaul the state's severely underfunded pension systems unconstitutional. 

At least two bills calling for additional casinos are before lawmakers with another in the works.  Opponents of expanded gambling say the market is already saturated while other groups worry about increased addiction.