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Analysis: Kan. Casino Board Would Like Better Hand

JOHN HANNA

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) ¿ Members of a state board in Kansas don't appear to like the hand they've been dealt for proposed casinos in Kansas City and the Wichita area, and they're wondering whether they should fold.

Folding for the Lottery Gaming Facility Review Board would mean rejecting the single casino proposal for either area. The Kansas Lottery would be forced to solicit new proposals from developers to build and operate the casino for the lottery, which will own the new gambling.

Board members have been less than enthusiastic about the Kansas City proposal and the plan to build a casino south of Wichita. During a public hearing last week, the board's consultants suggested both had some limitations in drawing tourists to Kansas, and board members peppered representatives of the companies pushing the proposals with questions.

But the consultants also told the board that the national economy is to blame if either proposal seems short of what the board had hoped for in a casino plan. The consultants said the economy limited competition for contracts with the lottery and led to scaled-back proposals.

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