On Tuesday evening, the Boonville City Council unanimously approved “A resolution of the city of Boonville opposing any grant of authority by the State of Missouri to the Osage Nation of Oklahoma or others to expand tribal gaming into Missouri” (R2018-02)
The reasons behind this resolution are: the development of Missouri’s riverboat gaming industry has been sanctioned by the voters of Missouri; the riverboat gaming industry provides jobs to over 10,000 workers in Missouri; the riverboat industry has added over $300 million to the state’s school funding formula; the Isle of Capri Hotel and Casino has provided invaluable support to the local economy in Boonville, allowing the City to benefit from capital improvements and other investments for the public benefit that otherwise would not have been possible; the Isle of Capri has been a reliable benefactor and partner in charitable activities in and around Boonville; the entirety of Missouri’s riverboat gaming industry has supported this state, while abiding by strict regulations and limits on expansion pursuant to the will of Missouri voters; and the Osage Nation of Oklahoma now proposes to expand its own gaming industry into Missouri, where it would not be subject to the same voter-approved restrictions as Missouri’s gaming industry, and where it would unfairly compete in a saturated gaming market, drawing benefits away from the Missouri communities that rely on our riverboat gaming for support.
Other business before the council included the approval of two payments to Qualite Sports Lighting, LLC for the Soccer Complex in the amounts of $160,200.00 and $517,700.00.
The council heard the first reading of Bill No. 2018-002 Declaring Need to Acquire Easements for Water Line and Hwy B Water Tower to Hail Ridge Golf Course.
Reports of city officials took up the remaining part of the meeting. City Administrator Irl Tessendorf covered the budget of departmental capital. All departments reported to the council and are making many purchases on a revolving basis while attempting to hold back funds from one year to the next for larger purchases.
Mayor Julie Thacher elaborated on Resolution 2018-02 which was passed earlier in the evening. “These machines could seriously cut into the funds Boonville gets from the Isle of Capri.” Thacher went on to say Illinois passed a similar bill and has lost over 800 jobs and tax revenues in excess of $96M. “Anyone who is against the passage of this bill,” she added, “should contact State Senator Caleb Rowden, or State Representatives Dave Muntzel and Chuck Basye.”
City Clerk Teresa Studley reminded council members that there would be a work session before the next council meeting on Monday, March 5 at 5:45 p.m.