West Virginia is another State to legalize high stakes poker games in their casinos. The Wheeling Island Racetrack & Gaming Resort and The Mountaineer Race Track and Gaming Center will officially begin poker at their establishments, Friday, October 19th, 2007; as The West Virginia State Lottery Commission has given them the go-ahead. Wheeling Island Casino will open their poker rooms at 10:00a.m. with twenty tables. Mountaineer’s Casino will open their poker rooms at 4:00p.m. with thirty-seven tables.
Last week, The Lottery Commission permitted the two casinos to hold trial runs of No Limit Hold’em as well as other card games for the first time. Proceeds from the events were donated to charity. In an interview with the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, Lottery Commission Spokeswoman, Nancy Bulla said, “This gives employees time to practice. Moreover, for our purpose, it gives the lottery an opportunity to be certain security and operational guidelines, under the rules and regulations, have all the “i’s” dotted and all the “t’s” crossed.”
This opens up economic gain for Ohio County, West Virginia. People will now be able to attain jobs that will allow them to sustain a good lifestyle and a job that can turn into a career. As the table gaming project begins to mature, management positions will grow. According to Mountaineer President Ted Arneault, “This is an exciting time for the Resort, the County and the people who now have new jobs.”
It has been reported that since Florida has gone this same route with the No Limit Poker games, that is has changed the overall scheme of poker playing in their State; no limit games allow players to make more money than in tournaments. The people of Ohio County, West Virginia are hopeful for this as well.
However, Ohio County Officials are being very cautious about anticipating a huge monetary gain from the table gaming. They did not budget money from the games into their fiscal year because their budget was prepared back in March and they were not sure what the table gaming election’s decision would be or if tables would be up and running.
Officials are hoping to obtain a better sense pertaining to the budgeting decisions for the upcoming year over the next three to six months. Ohio County Administrator, Greg Stewart, was reported as saying that any money that does come in this year would be carried over to next year’s budget.
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