The Bucks County Commissioners approved a resolution to opt out of video gaming terminals (VGTs) in truck stops across the county, as section 4506 of Act 42 allows.
Ten Bucks’ State Reps from both sides of the aisle sent the resolution to the Commissioners shortly after Act 42 on gaming expansion was signed by Gov. Tom Wolf in late Oct. Bucks County hosts Parx Casino located in Bensalem, which provides nearly $850,000 from slot revenue to various surrounding townships.
Wednesday morning, Charles Martin, Chairman, Robert Loughery, Vice Chairman, and Diane Ellis-Marseglia unanimously voted to block installation of VGT’s in truck stops.
“When I read the legislation there was absolutely no benefit to Bucks County to have that facility type,” Martin said after the vote.
Counties that approved the VGT measure will see revenue go directly to the truck stop with a portion to the Commonwealth Financing Authority. The new act is meant to help balance the Pennsylvania budget through the addition of several satellite casinos, the VGTs, and more.
“Many of us saw a better solution to balance the budget like taxing the Marcellus Shale drilling,” Rep. Gene DiGirolamo shared at the meeting alongside Bensalem Mayor Joseph DiGirolamo.
The disapproval of Act 42 and the measure of VGT’s in truck stops have been openly discussed by State Reps, including Scott Petri, Frank Farry, and Tina David, and Sen. Tommy Tomlinson to the Commissioners.
“From the upper part of the county to down here to Bensalem, everyone was on board with this and I think it shows,” Loughery said.
Since Bucks opted out of the VGT provision this year, the Commissioners can always later vote to approve them if measures in the Act change to their liking.
The deadline for all motions to prohibit VGTs in truck stops is Dec. 29. Bucks’ Commissioners assured the signed resolution was on its way to Harrisburg after the Wednesday meeting.