The PTA Council of Howard County forum and debate on expanded gambling has been canceled because of Hurricane Sandy.

The event had been scheduled to take place Monday, Oct. 29 at 8 p.m. at the Department of Education in Ellicott City, but the school system closed all schools and offices in the wake of the storm, and canceled all after-school activities.

Question 7 was placed on the ballot after a referendum earlier this year and deals with expanded gambling — slots and table games, as well as the opening of a casino in Prince George's County.

The PTA Council's event was going to feature Delegates Gail Bates and Frank Turner in a forum, giving statements on their positions. Bates,a West Friendship Republican, has been opposed to expanded gambling, while Turner, a Columbia Democrat, voted for the measure.

Representatives from Get the Facts, Vote No On 7 and Maryland Jobs and Schools, Inc., had been scheduled to debate the merits of the question.

"This referendum will impact the education trust fund, which not only affects students in the county, but in the entire state," said PTA Council President Christina Delmont-Small. "We should be able to give our members and the community as much factual information as possible, and we think the best way is to have both sides present their case and be able to answer the hard questions."