Missouri’s casinos to remain closed through May 31

No bets at Missouri’s 13 casinos through May 31. A press release today from the State Gaming Commission says riverboat gambling will remain closed to help with the fight against the coronavirus. State Gaming Commission Chairman Mike Leara tells Missourinet the commission has been working with the Governor’s Office to determine when casinos can get back to business.

“If the state infection rate continues on the trajectory that it is, I think we’ll be able to accomplish a June 1 opening,” says Leara.

The commission has suspended the gaming licenses of the riverboat gambling operations. Casinos have been closed since mid-March – costing the state about $1 million in revenue for each day the lights are off.

Most of the proceeds go to help fund Missouri’s public schools and universities. Another part of gambling funds go to the local communities where each casino is found.

Floating casinos are located in St. Louis, St. Charles, Kansas City, St. Joseph in northwest Missouri, central Missouri’s Boonville, La Grange in northeast Missouri, and southeast Missouri’s Caruthersville and Cape Girardeau.

“I’ve spoken to some that are ready. They feel comfortable,” Leara says. “Most of them, not.”

The commission is working with casinos to come up with social distancing requirements. Measures could include removing every other chair from gaming tables, closing every other slot machine, continuously cleaning, protection equipment on dealers and employees and occupancy limits.

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