OH Policy Group Continues VLT Challenge

Oral arguments in the case could be held the third week in February.

by John Kady

The Ohio Roundtable Jan. 23 asked a Franklin County Common Pleas Court judge to reject motions filed by the state to dismiss a lawsuit challenging legislative approval of a 2011 bill to authorize video lottery terminals at racetracks.

Ohio Roundtable spokesman Rob Walgate said the petitions his organization filed reference a 2009 decision by the Ohio Supreme Court rejecting a directive by then-Gov. Ted Strickland authorizing racetrack VLTs. The Ohio Roundtable contends racetrack VLTs, like the four full-scale casinos approved several years ago, require a vote of the people.

Franklin County Common Pleas Court judge Timothy Horton tentatively set the third week in February for oral arguments in the case.

Ohio racetracks have been working behind the scenes on gaming plans but only one—Scioto Downs, a Columbus harness track owned by MTR Gaming Group—has begun construction on a VLT facility.