INDIANAPOLIS | Counties without casinos would also lose some of their gaming tax revenue following a change made Thursday to legislation intended to help Indiana casinos make improvements to better compete with new casinos in neighboring states.
The Senate altered Senate Bill 528 to cut $6.4 million from the $33 million that counties without casinos receive every year.
State Sen. Luke Kenley, R-Noblesville, the sponsor of the amendment, said it's only fair that every county receiving gaming revenue share in the cost of the incentive package.
Counties and cities with casinos were facing a revenue cut of nearly $40 million prior to the amendment. They will now lose $27 million with Lake County, Gary, East Chicago, Michigan City and LaPorte County projected to lose the most.
The Senate also amended the legislation to take effect upon being signed into law and to require tax credits for free play be evenly split between Hoosier and out-of-state gamblers.
A proposal by state Sen. Karen Tallian, D-Ogden Dunes, to allow unlimited tax-free free play at Indiana casinos located less than 25 miles from a state border was rejected.
A final Senate vote to send the legislation to the House is expected next week.