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24-hour casino push worries anti-gambling groups

9:45 AM, Sep 18, 2013   |    comments
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Zynga online gambling (Credit: KNTV)

CHICAGO (AP) - The state's gambling regulatory board plans to hear arguments about whether to allow casinos to stay open around-the-clock.

Illinois' 10 casinos are currently allowed to stay open up to 22 hours.

Proponents estimate that staying open two more hours means adding $5 million in state revenue and staying competitive with video gambling terminals at truck stops and neighboring states that have 24-hour gambling.

But anti-gambling groups say the social costs are too great. For gambling addicts, closing for even two hours means a break from a binge.

Jerry Prosapio is a former addict who'd spend up to 35 hours at a time gambling and it ruined his life. He now runs a nonprofit organization to help problem gamblers.

The Illinois Gaming Board meets Thursday to hear arguments.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

The Associated Press

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