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Illinois man arraigned in online gambling schemeā€Ž

A Chicago man was arraigned today in the sweeping nationwide crackdown on online poker gambling.

Bradley Franzen, 41, was arraigned this morning in New York, authorities said. Get the full story »

11 arrested in crackdown on online gambling

The owners of three of the largest Internet poker companies operating in the United States were accused on Friday of tricking regulators and banks into processing billions of dollars of illegal Internet gambling proceeds. Get the full story »

Appellate court guts Ill. public works program

An appellate court tossed out Gov. Pat Quinn’s signature $31 billion construction program, widespread plans for video poker and higher taxes on candy and booze, declaring Wednesday in a ruling that they were unconstitutional.

The justices ruled the problem with the law is that it violated the state’s basic constitutional tenet that legislation must address a single subject only. They wrote that wide-ranging issues in one of four bills passed in 2009 failed to have a “natural and logical connection.”

The decision knocked out all four laws that represented the backbone of the public works program Quinn put together with bipartisan support two years ago. It was the culmination of an effort with legislative leaders who had found working with former Gov. Rod Blagojevich futile. Get the full story »

Casino giant Harrah’s changes name to Caesars

Harrah’s Entertainment Inc., the world’s largest casino company, has changed its name to Caesars Entertainment Corp. Harrah’s will continue to be one of the company’s brands, along with Caesars, Horseshoe, Total Rewards, and World Series of Poker. Get the full story »

Harrah’s cancels its initial public offering

Harrah’s Entertainment, which operates two casinos in Illinois, canceled its initial public offering, citing market conditions.

The casino operator was expected to price the offering on Thursday and begin trading on the Nasdaq this week. Harrah’s had said it would raise as much as $531 million for casino projects and to help with its heavy debt burden. Get the full story »

Ill. lawmakers take new look at gambling expansion

Illinois lawmakers are taking a new look at expanded gambling as a way to reduce the state’s massive budget deficit.

Lawmakers have talked for years about adding new casinos or putting slot machines at racetracks, but the proposals have always fallen apart. They’re getting more serious attention now, with the state facing a roughly $15 billion deficit. Get the full story »

Ill. gambling revenue lowest in 10 years

Revenue from legalized gambling in Illinois is the lowest it’s been in 10 years. A report from the Legislature’s Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability found gambling revenue totaled just over $1 billion in the last fiscal year. That’s a 4.5 percent drop from the previous year.

WMS sues Bally Gaming over patent infringement

Waukegan-based slot machine maker WMS Industries Inc. said its gaming unit filed a patent infringement lawsuit against a unit of smaller rival Bally Technologies Inc., seeking injunctive relief and unspecified damages.

Several of Bally Gaming’s products, including its Cash Spin product, infringe WMS patents covering WMS’ Transmissive Reels gaming concept and technology, WMS said in a statement. Get the full story »

Illinois Lottery offers new ā€˜Cash 4 College’ game

The Lottery announced a new ā€œCash 4 Collegeā€ scratch-off ticket Thursday. Five winners get full tuition and any mandatory fees for college. Lottery spokeswoman Tracy Owens says officials hope the new ticket will help fulfill the dream of continued education but without the worry about tuition. Get the full story »

Ameristar Casinos looking at ’strategic alternatives’

The parent company of Ameristar Casino Hotel East Chicago in Hammond, Ind., confirmed Wednesday it is exploring strategic alternatives, including a possible sale of the company.

The company said it retained Lazard and Bank of America Merrill Lynch as its financial advisers and Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP as its legal adviser in the process. Get the full story »

Revenue at Illinois slots down again in 2009

Illinois gamblers cut back on their slot-machine action in 2009.

In a study released Monday about slot-machine spending in four casino markets, the American Gaming Association said one-armed bandits in Illinois, Las Vegas and Atlantic City, N.J., took in less revenue in 2009 than they did in 2008. Get the full story »

Midwest Gaming, Clairvest financing deal completed

From The Wall Street Journal | Clairvest Group has closed a $72 million investment in Midwest Gaming Holdings LLC, which is
building a casino and entertainment complex in Des Plaines, Ill., slated to open in 2011.
Midwest has closed on $295 million in debt financing and purchased the
land for the project. The financing package and construction project got
state regulatory approval on March 30, and Midwest paid $47.5 million
as a down-payment on a casino license.

Get the full story: