CHICAGO (AP) -- The Illinois Gaming Board says video poker machines have been activated at 65 bars, restaurants and other locations throughout Illinois.
The board released a statement Tuesday announcing the long-anticipated start of video gaming. It says it's processing license applications for more than 2,200 other establishments, including fraternal organizations and truck stops. Each site must undergo a background check.
The manager of Chino's Pizzeria in the Chicago suburb of Justice says the restaurant's three machines came on around 11:30 a.m. Tuesday.
Jeff Glover says he'd just finished mopping when he saw the machines lit up as actual games, instead of with the "out of service" message.
The state approved video gambling in 2009 to help fund a $31 billion construction program to fix schools, roads and other transportation projects.