Walker’s Bluff Casino License Approval Stalled for 6 Months

By Danny Connolly, Staff Writer

The vote for Walker’s Bluff’s casino license has been delayed for at least 6 months by the Illinois Gaming Board.

Walker’s Bluff winery and restaurant, located in Carterville, Ill., filed their Illinois casino application on Oct. 28th, 2019. The Illinois Gambling Act requires voting on all casino licenses within a year of filing the application.

(See more: Illinois Gambling Act)  

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At a special virtual meeting on Oct. 29, the IGB decided to shelve the license decision, citing the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Like all government agencies and private businesses, the board’s work has been impacted by COVID-19,” IGB administrator Marcus Fruchter said at the meeting. 

The applications for seven other casino licenses in the state were all also delayed. 

“We are a little disappointed to learn about the possible six-month delay,” Cynde Bunch, owner of Walker’s Bluff, said in a statement to River Region Evening Edition. “We completely understand how the pandemic has created major challenges for the Illinois Gaming Board in this process and appreciate the efforts of the board and staff during these difficult times.” 

The plan for Walker’s Bluff Casino and Resort includes a 100-room hotel, an event center, and a spa. According to their website, a temporary casino would open at Walker’s Bluff about 9 months after the license is granted. 

(See more: https://www.walkersbluffcasinoresort.com/)

Staff reporter Danny Connolly can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter at @DConnollyTV.

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