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New Study Could Help Cedar Rapids Casino

RIVERSIDE (CBS 2/FOX 28) Finding the best spot for a casino means factoring in a lot of variables.

"We will look at factors such as the economy, demographic trends, personal income, disposable income, promised Marquette Advisors, Inc during their pitch to the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission. They are one of three firms looking to perform market research analysis in Iowa regarding gambling in the state.

Those are factors that the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission what to know before they approve any more casinos in the state. That includes one proposed for downtown Cedar Rapids.

The commission wants a study which, calls for the consultant to analyze and either recommend or not whether or not additional casinos are economically viable in the state, said Marquette Advisors, Incs Lou Frillmen.

The commission wants to avoid over-saturation of the gaming market. Too many casinos too close together, means too many games and not enough players and no one makes any money.

"Its important for the facilities to be financially stable, said the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission Administrator Brian Ohorilko.

Surrounding casinos in Riverside, Waterloo and Dubuque fear a new one in Cedar Rapids will eat into their customer base. Those behind the Cedar Rapids proposal say their own study, done earlier this year, shows the city, can support itself
 Our population continues to grow as does Linn County so we think there's an under-served market, said Cedar Rapids Mayor Ron Corbett.

For now, the city and casino investors are finalizing their proposal for a gaming license. That's due to the commission by September 3rd.

The vendor chosen to do the study will be announced at the October Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission meeting in Dubuque. That is also the meeting at which Cedar Rapids officials will present their case for a gaming license in the state before the commission in person.
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