Senate backs allowing Indiana riverboats moving onto land, drops live dealers at horse tracks

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INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana's riverboats casinos would be allowed to move onto land under a bill approved by the state Senate.

However, the proposal endorsed in a 36-13 vote Thursday would not permit live dealers for table games at the two horse track casinos near Indianapolis until 2021. The House in February endorsed the live dealers provision despite the apparent opposition of Gov. Mike Pence on the grounds that he would consider it an expansion of gambling in the state.

The bill calls for a special committee to study the state's tax system for the 13 casinos.

Bill supporters say the state needs to help Indiana's casinos as they face growing competition from neighboring states.

House and Senate negotiators have until April 29 to agree on a final version of the bill.

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