Pennsylvania House Wants More From Slot Machines

The Pennsylvania House of Representatives has proposed that racetrack slot machines produce $1 billion in revenue, way up from the $400 million projected for this fiscal year in legislation approved by the state Senate.

The bill is now in the House, where it is expected to undergo changes. The Patriot-News of Harrisburg, Pa., reported July 8 that under the House plan, the number of licensed racetracks would go from six to 11. If a law is changed, tracks would only need one license to operate 225 days a year. Three tracks in the state each have two associations that offer live racing.

The newspaper reported that if a $50-million fee licensing fee were charged wot all 11 licensees, the state could raise $550 million for its budget. And that's not counting revenue from slot machines, which would only be operational at four existing tracks at the outset: Penn National Race Course, Philadelphia Park, The Meadows, and The Downs at Pocono.

The Patriot-News reported House leaders also propose non-racetrack slots licenses. Sen. Robert Tomlinson, a proponent of the Senate bill, said expanion beyond racetracks "could be a killer."