Columbia OKs gaming restrictions - Republic-Times | News

Columbia OKs gaming restrictions

By on January 25, 2018 at 2:57 pm

The Columbia City Council at last week’s regular meeting approved changes to the liquor code that will essentially prohibit gaming parlors from opening within city limits and gas stations from installing slot machines.

Only the state can regulate video gaming, per the Illinois Video Gaming Act. But to whom liquor licenses are issued is up to the city. This offers a significant method of regulation since according to the VGA, only establishments with on-premise liquor licenses are eligible for gaming terminals.

Among the changes aldermen approved to the current liquor code is the distinction that an on-premise liquor license will not be issued to an establishment that derives more than 50 percent of its revenue from video gaming.

Additionally, no business can hold more than one type of liquor license, nor can a liquor license be issued to a business that shares a wall with another business with a liquor license, unless they have separate entrances and exits.   

“The intent is to not eliminate the restaurants and bars that have them, nor prohibit the way they’re currently being used in a majority of establishments in the city. The sense is the gaming parlors and video gaming rooms at gas stations are just not what I think the city envisioned when the state passed this law,” Columbia city administrator Jimmy Morani said in December.

To read the rest of this article, pick up the Jan. 24 print issue of the Republic-Times newspaper. To subscribe to our print or online versions, call 618-939-3814 or click here.

Andrea F.D. Saathoff

Andrea is a graduate of Gibault High School and the University of Missouri School of Journalism, the University of Missouri Harry S Truman School of Public Affairs and Southern Illinois University Edwardsville College of Education. She lives in Columbia with her husband and their twin toddler sons. When she isn't cheering on St. Louis Cardinals baseball or riding the emotional roller coaster of Mizzou Tigers football, she enjoys attending and participating in the many family events the county has to offer. email: