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Black Hawk County Approves Riverboat Gambling

8 October 2003

IOWA – As reported by the Des Moines Register: "Voters in Black Hawk County gave their overwhelming approval Tuesday to riverboat gambling - after rejecting the idea twice before nine years ago.

"Voters authorized casino gambling, 21,722 to 11,048. Voter turnout was 46.8 percent, less than the 56.8 percent that voted in the last gambling referendum in 1996.

"The vote is the first step for a plan to create a 20-acre lake on Waterloo's southeast side to accommodate the riverboat.

"Backers must now get a license from the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission, which will meet next month to consider lifting a five-year moratorium on granting new licenses.

"…Jim Lind, president of the Citizens for Property Tax Relief, which supported gambling, said recent troubles at the Meskwaki casino near Tama, closed by federal regulators during a tribal battle over leadership, may have aided the approval.

"…The vote allows all casino games permitted on riverboats. In 1994 in two separate referendums, county voters said no to slot machines at the Waterloo Greyhound Park…"

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