Colorado Weighs Gambling Expansion At Racetracks

October 16, 2014 7:38 PM

Colorado Weighs Gambling Expansion At Racetracks
" DENVER (AP) — Voters will decide whether to allow casino gambling at a horse racetrack in suburban Denver, and two other locations in the future, with the promise that the taxes raised will funnel $114 million a year to public schools.

It’s a high-stakes proposal that has opponents and supporters spending a combined $33 million to get their message out on what would be a state constitutional amendment.

Opponents, who have raised $16.1 million for their campaign, see the question as trying to entice voters with an unreliable source of funding for schools — the target of heavy budget cuts during recessions. They say the proposal, known as Amendment 68, will ultimately hurt mountain casinos because gamblers will gravitate to Arapahoe Park in Aurora if voters approve it. Casinos have spent millions trying to defeat the initiative in a clash with the out-of-state gambling company spearheading the question.

Supporters, however, say the proposal will improve local economies, boost tourism and increase the amount the state allocates to public schools. Their campaign has raised $16.8 million, supported by Rhode Island’s Twin River Worldwide Holdings, which owns the Arapahoe Park.

Opponents see it as benefiting an out-of-state company "

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