Indiana video gambling fans to plan legislative strategy

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Advocates of legalized video gambling in Indiana will plot legislative strategy this week in Indianapolis.

The Evansville Courier-Press reports that the group is made up of trade organizations representing amusement and music operators, licensed beverage dealers and bowling centers.

The group calls itself the Video Game Coalition. It advocates electronic terminals in places such as bars and truck stops that allow patrons to gamble on poker, blackjack or other games. Those games are currently only allowed in casinos.

Backers say revenue raised could fund state infrastructure improvements. They say Illinois’ legalization of video gambling has contributed to a downturn in Indiana casino revenue.

The coalition is seeking legislative sponsors. A plan by Jasper Republican Sen. Mark Messmer never got a hearing, dying in the Rule Committee.