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London City Council Votes In Favour Of Gaming Expansion

Published: April 25, 2018 10:35 am ET

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On Tuesday (April 24), London City Council voted 9-5 in favour of expanded gambling in London, Ont., and also stated its preference for the expansion to occur at the Western Fair District.

Word of the vote comes courtesy of an article by Global News. Full council’s decision came a day after the city’s Strategic Priorities and Policy Committee (SPPC) voted 7-5 in favour of expanded gaming.

Much of the SPPC’s Monday discussions had focused on having the expanded gaming occur at the Western Fair District. The iconic southwestern Ontario entertainment venue is currently in negotiations with Gateway Casinos, which recently proposed a multi-million-dollar expansion at the location, which is also home to live harness racing.

On Tuesday, London’s full council also voted 13-1 in favour of a non-binding preference that the gaming expansion occur at the Western Fair District.

"It will be a win-win," Standardbred Canada Director Mark Horner had said Monday, according to the CBC. "The Western Fair will continue to be hub of horse racing and remain relevant in current city activities. Horsepeople and horses will continue to provide horse racing in this city."

“If the Western Fair were to not have gaming at its site, then without question, that would dramatically change the game of racing in southwestern Ontario,” Seelster Farms Reproduction Manager Ann Straatman, who is also a director of Standardbred Canada, had said on Monday.

(With files from Global News and the CBC)

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