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The Daily Sentinel – Gaming industry touts importance to state economy

October 15, 2015

By Charles Ashby

October 15, 2015 

Casino gambling is good for the economy.

At least, that’s the message the American Gaming Association wanted to make at a roundtable discussion on the topic in Wheat Ridge on Wednesday.

That event, attended by Colorado Republican U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton and U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner, wasn’t held because of any general concern that the industry is being targeted, but just as a general reminder to state and national leaders that casinos have done much in the way of economic development, said Chris Moyer, spokesman for the group.

And having people like Tipton and Gardner at the roundtable helps get that message across, he said.

“Why are we doing this? We want people to know, especially policymakers in the state and the presidential candidates who are going to start coming to Colorado, about the importance of the gaming industry,” Moyer said. “It’s something that a lot of folks don’t see every day because they’re in the mountain towns. It’s the jobs that people don’t always associate with the industry, and the integrity .. of the games you see at the casinos to see that they’re fair.”

Nicholas Zupancic, Tipton’s chief of staff, said the congressman attended the event because of the almost forgotten fourth casino town in the state — outside of Black Hawk, Central City and Cripple Creek — that’s operated by the Southern Ute Tribe in Ignacio, not far from his hometown of Cortez.

Zupancic said the congressman is interested in the industry and supports what it brings to the state.

Nationwide, casinos employ more than half a million jobs and contribute about $75 billion to local communities a year, according to the association.

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