Village President Casts Tie-Breaking Vote on Gaming License

By Jeremy Coumbes on November 5, 2022 at 1:10pm

The South Jacksonville Board of Trustees had to force a tie-breaking vote on an ordinance allowing a new gaming facility in the Village during its regular meeting this week.

During the October Committee of the Whole meeting, the trustees were presented with a request for a new gaming and liquor license for a new facility that would be named The Lucky Clover, planned for a space in the Colony South shopping center on South Main Street.

The request came from the Freiburg family out of Quincy who owns not only Colony South but also the Max-A-Millions gaming parlor that is already established in the shopping center.

According to numbers presented by President Tanner Freiburg at the committee of the whole meeting, Max-A-Millions generates approximately one-quarter of the village’s more than $15,000 in monthly tax revenue from their gambling machines and expects The Lucky Clover to generate similar numbers.

Village President Dick Samples said during discussion at the regular November meeting on Thursday night, that adding another facility would generate an annual license fee of $5,000.00 on top of the estimated $3,000 to $3,500 in average monthly revenue per license.

During discussion, Police Chief Eric Hansell confirmed Samples’ assertation that his department has not had any trouble with patrons of the gaming parlors in the Village.

Opinions on allowing the new facility differed among the trustees however, following the vote, the measure stood deadlocked in a 3-3 tie, with members Tom Jordan, Todd Warrick, and Tom Luber all voting in favor, and Paula Stewart, Jackie Bridget, and Steve Retzer voting against.

Samples was forced to give the deciding vote, going in favor of approving the license request and allowing the new parlor. During discussion, Samples noted that adding the new facility would raise the number of licenses to 16 in the village, two less than the total number allowed when video gaming parlors were first allowed in the state.