City House delegation sets conditions for casino votes

Baltimore members of the House of Delegates will vote unanimously against any expansion of gambling in Maryland unless at least three conditions are met, delegation chairman Curtis Anderson said Monday morning as the General Assembly rushed toward what could either be adjournment or overtime.

Anderson said the 18 city delegates would not vote for the gambling expansion sought by Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller unless:

1.  The budget conference restores $2.5 million the Senate stripped from the capital budget for expansion of the Baltimore Convention Center.

2. The gambling bill is amended to provide that the planned Baltimore casino will have three years of being up and running before a Prince George's site can open.

3. The Senate approves an increase in the city's bonding capacity for school construction from $100 million to $200 million. Anderson said the Senate has been sitting on that bill for no good reason.

The gambling bill the city delegates are threatening to oppose en masse is the major sticking point holding up agreement on the state budget, which must be approved by midnight if an extended session is to be avoidded.




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