The Senate Appropriations Committee made several changes Thursday to a bill dealing with Indiana gaming taxes and revenue.
Representative Todd Huston’s (R-Fishers) legislation makes several gaming industry changes, including creating a new wagering tax on casinos and eliminating the admissions tax casinos pay.
An alteration in committee would reduce guaranteed money paid to counties across the state each year that comes from gaming revenues. Essentially, as total gaming revenues decrease in the future, so would the guaranteed payouts.
Huston says the issue is one of fairness.
“For a lot of years, it was a great, great industry for the state of Indiana, putting lots and lots of revenue into state and local communities. But it isn’t that way anymore and we’re going to have to kinda have that shared sacrifice together,” Huston says.
Reducing that guaranteed money draws significant objections from lawmakers with casinos in their communities.
Still, Appropriations Committee Chair Senator Luke Kenley (R-Noblesville) says there’s a path forward.
“I don’t see anything in this bill that is insurmountable if we’ll put our heads to it, if we want to reach a solution,” Kenley says.
The bill now heads to the Senate floor.