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Casino Supporters Say Opponents Use Bad Data

By Kevin Lavery, KWMU

St. Louis – The president of the St. Louis County Economic Council says a group trying to overturn a county ordinance allowing for a new casino in Lemay is using flawed data.

The group Casino Watch is trying to gather 25,000 signatures by Tuesday afternoon in order to put an anti-gaming referendum on the November ballot.

Its members say another casino would foster gambling addiction. But economic council president Denny Coleman says that's not a valid argument.

"I think that there clearly are problem gamblers in the community, but that's not to say that those problem gamblers wouldn't find an outlet for that problem somewhere else," Coleman said. "This is an industry that is made by the Missouri Gaming Commission to invest a lot of money in helping problem gamblers."

Casino Watch maintains county residents widely oppose gaming expansion.

However, a survey of more than 300 county residents conducted last May found 52 percent favor development in Lemay.