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Cook County could add $1 OTB parlor admission tax

Friday, February 02, 2007
Chicago Sun-Times

Walking in the door to play the ponies could soon cost $1 more. As Cook County commissioners try to fill a $500 million deficit, a plan is being floated to impose a $1 county admission tax at off-track betting parlors. Commissioners Jerry Butler and Deborah Sims say the tax could reap $1.5 million a year. "We're the only ones out here not charging an admission tax, so why not?" Butler said. Illinois Racing Board spokesman Mickey Ezzo said Chicago charges OTB visitors $1 at its four parlors -- one of which, at State and Lake, closed Sunday and is moving to River North. The plan would add the county fee to any city charge, and it calls for $2 OTB entry fees if a parlor opens in unincorporated Cook County.


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