By Jim Hagerty
ROCKFORD — Mayor Tom McNamara will travel to Springfield this week to further the city’s push for a casino license.
McNamara, along with Rockford Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Einar Forsman, addressed media Monday to expound on a letter they penned that was published in the Chicago-Sun Times and Chicago Tribune. The letter congratulates the Mayor-Elect Lori Lightfoot on her recent win and offers support for Chicago’s efforts to obtain a license.
The chamber will also run print and digital ads in the Springfield Journal Register to urge Gov. J.B. Pritzker and the General Assembly to approve casino licenses in Chicago and Rockford.
“Now is the time to act for the city of Rockford to get a casino,” Mayor Tom McNamara said. “We’ve talked about this literally before I could drive. It’s been well over 20 years since our community has wanted and has been working towards a casino.”
McNamara said a casino in Rockford could mean 800 to 1,100 jobs and has the potential for the city to collect between This is $6 million to $8 million in revenue.
“We need the state legislature to act and bring the city of Rockford a casino,” McNamara said. “This is incredibly important to the city of Rockford. There’s always been a sense of urgency, but I believe that the sense of urgency has stepped up as we see Beloit moving further and further down the road to having their own casino. We have enough of the state of Illinois taxes leaving Illinois and going to other states like Wisconsin and Indiana. Now is the time to stop that flow of our money going outside of our state and keep it right here in the city of Rockford.” R.