Lawsuits attempting to block gambling expansion in Arkansas thrown out

Oct 12, 2018 10:20 AM

Votes in Arkansas on an amendment to the state constitution that would allow expanded gambling will be counted, the Arkansas Supreme Court ruled Thursday.

The state’s highest court said the casino legalization ballot initiative should be tallied, tossing out two lawsuits seeking to block the count alleging that the wording is misleading and ambiguous in several areas.

The court ruled, however, that the text of the proposed amendment was clear and did not mislead voters.

If voters approve the measure, it would allow the Arkansas Racing Commission to issue full casino licenses at Oaklawn Park, the iconic horse racing track in Hot Springs, and at Southland Park, a West Memphis greyhound track, both now only offering only electronic gambling. However, a key element of the proposal, funded in large measure by tribal gaming interests in Oklahoma, would legalize new casinos in Jefferson and Pope counties.