State measure would allow gambling loans at casinos -

State measure would allow gambling loans at casinos

JEFFERSON CITY, Missouri—Missouri lawmakers are considering a measure allowing casinos to loan money to patrons, something opponents say could make things worse for those with gambling addictions.

The House Financial Institutions Committee added the change onto a banking bill Wednesday with no debate. Under the measure, gamblers who pass a credit check would be able to borrow money and exchange it for electronic tokens and chips for wagering.

Committee members endorsed it by a 13-1 vote, sending the measure to the full House after the Rules Committee approves it.

But some say the legislator who authored the bill, Rep. Scott Largent of Clinton, attached the measure to an existing bill so it would soar through the process.

News 4 discovered Largent received $800 in campaign contributions from casinos in 2011, a hefty amount for small budget house campaigns.

State representative Jamilah Nasheed is on the House committee where the provision was proposed and inadvertently voted for it because no time was given to explain it.

The proposal still has to get a full House and Senate vote, but it’s much farther along than if it were proposed as a bill through the usual procedures.

Information from the Associated Press contributed to this report.

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