Senate votes to bar stimulus funds from Nevada casinos

Feb 11, 2009 5:09 AM
Industry Insider by Ray Poirier | President Obama’s stimulus plan may put more cash into people’s pockets so that they can again patronize Nevada casinos.

But, there will be no money in the legislation for "any casino or gaming establishment."

That was determined by a vote in the Senate proposed by Oklahoma’s Tom Coburn. The vote was 73 to 24 with Sen. John Ensign voting in favor and Sen. Harry Reid against.

Also, the economic stimulus bill will specifically bar usage of the money for such items as recreational projects such as museums (did someone say Mob Museum), golf courses, aquariums and zoos.

Reid had indicated he was strongly supporting a provision of the bill that would have allowed companies to pay lower tax rates when they refinance their debt. The provision was strongly backed by Las Vegas casino operators such as MGM MIRAGE Inc. (MGM) and Wynn Resorts Ltd. (WYNN), according to the Wall Street Journal.