Push Comes To Shove Over Oak Lawn’s VGT ‘Push Tax’

Written By Joe Boozell on August 13, 2020Last Updated on August 16, 2020

On January 1, a video gaming terminal( VGT ) & ldquo, or push tax & rtquo ), went into operation in Oak Lawn. It would be an understatement to say that it & rsquo, s caused controversy.

Illinois gamblers are subject to a coin drive tax each time they use one of the gambling machines. In late July, the Oak Lawn village fined 13 VGT operators for failing to turn in the city & rsquo ordinance-required forms.

Well, the providers are responding in kind.

Push duty problems

The Illinois Gaming Machine Operators Association represents the terminal operators. It argues that the push tax violates the Video Gaming Act, which prohibits player tracking. Furthermore, the association says the ordinance would be costly and technologically difficult to implement.

“My understanding is that’s not something that all terminal operators have the ability to do,” Kim Walberg, an attorney representing the operators, said at a hearing on July 15. “We simply cannot do what you’re asking us to do.”

However, Walberg was contradicted in his testimony by Rick Meitzler, president and CEO of entertainment equipment manufacturer Novomatic Americas Sales, at least in that regard.

Every time a handle is pulled, we measure it, and it & rsquo, inside each machine, is up to the state or the system to pull that data. & rdquo,

A week after the trials, Mayor Sandra Bury fined the 13 operators$ 500. She claims that a crucial aspect of Walberg andrsquo’s event does not keep up on that note.

Due to the fact that their own expert disproved their full case during the push tax hearing, I don’t believe they will have little success. & rdquo,

Push revenue is meant to balance the budget.

According to the Illinois Gaming Board( IGB ), the 200 slot machines in Oak Lawn & rsquo, bars, and lounges brought in close to$ 15 million last year. The state & rsquo’s new gaming law mandates that the state and local governments split a 33 % tax on gross revenue from the VGTs.

However, 83.3 % of that amount( almost$ 5 million in this case ) in Illinois goes to the state, leaving Oak Lawn with less than$ 1 million. So, in an effort to increase community income, the drive tax was passed.

According to the Chicago Tribune, it was expected to generate about $1 million this year before COVID-19 played spoiler.

Bury said of the terminal operators,” We don’t want to bring them to their knees, & rdquo.” However, we want to be able to offer our citizens service. & rdquo,

Push revenue is also approved by Waukegan City Council.

Waukegan will likewise enact a push tax that was passed in April as local governments struggle to raise money in the wake of COVID-19.

“I hate to be a bit of a pessimist, but we don’t know how much longer this is going to go on, we don’t know how many businesses may not reopen, how much tax revenue we’ve lost, not to mention our income tax share from the state of Illinois could take a huge hit,” Alderman Greg Moisiotold the Tribune. “We don’t know how much revenue we’re going to lose.”

Waukegan firms are regressing, as is the case in Oak Lawn.

According to Alderman Keith Turner, he was given a 30 enterprise users have signed a letter objecting to the income. The email lists the extent of the COVID-19 pandemic’s already-existing effects on their business.

It’s crucial to remember that the tax is imposed on VGT providers rather than the companies themselves. Perhaps there is confusion among business owners or concern that the revenue will discourage bettors.

Springfield passed regulations outlawing such a duty.

Regulations to outlaw laws like the force tax was introduced by State Rep. Bob Rita, but Waukegan town attorney Bob Long doesn’t think it’s getting off the ground. Huge remarked:

Nothing more than a proposal before the legislature, & ldquo, It & rsquo. I haven’t heard that it’s going anywhere, to be honest. When it reconvenes, it will be up to the General Assembly in Springfield to decide whether it does or does not. Sincerely, I’m not yet sure when it’s going to meet at this point. & rdquo,

If that is the case, a force tax may be tried by more and more places. Oddly, local governments may be monitoring events in Waukegan and Oak Lawn.

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Boozell, Joe

Boozell, Joe has also been a college sports writer for NCAA.com since 2015. His work has also appeared in Bleacher Report, FoxSports.com and NBA.com. Growing up, Boozell squared off against both Anthony Davis and Frank Kaminsky in the Chicagoland basketball scene … you can imagine how that went.

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