Politics & Government

Missouri will decide on new gambling rules in November

JEFFERSON CITY — Missouri voters this November will decide whether to get rid of laws limiting gambling losses at casinos in the state.

The Secretary of State on Tuesday certified an initiative petition that would eliminate loss limits and also increase taxes on casinos. It would require gamblers to show ID only to prove that they're 21.

If approved, the ballot question would also prevent any new casinos from being built.

The petition, which is supported by the casinos, garnered nearly 135,000 signatures across six of the state's congressional districts — well in excess of the 92,000 needed to be put on the ballot.

According to state auditor calculations, the state stands to gain between $105 million and $130 million a year from the proposed changes, most of which would be used for elementary, secondary and higher education in the state. Local governments that currently collect taxes from casinos should receive an additional $18 million to $19 million annually.

The Secretary of State also certified a petition to create the Missouri Quality Homecare Council, which would help recruit and train home-care workers. It is projected to cost the state at least $510,000 a year.