Current code prohibits businesses from advertising gambling
by Melanie Jongsma
LANSING, Ill. (February 14, 2018) – At the February 6 Committee of the Whole meeting, Village Attorney Matt Welch listed a number of amendments that he is proposing be conglomerated into one ordinance. One area of concern is found in Chapter 6 (Advertising) of the Village Code of Ordinances > Article II (Prohibited actions) > Section 6-23 (Unlawful Advertising). The second paragraph of that section prohibits the advertisement of gaming. In full, the paragraph reads:
“In addition, it shall be unlawful for a licensed establishment, licensed fraternal establishment or licensed veterans establishment which has video gaming terminals to display any advertisement which is visible to the public that advertises gaming terminals are located on the premises. This prohibition extends to both print and electronic advertisement.”
Ron’s Reels requests repeal
Ron’s Reels and Cafe, a new business that requested a liquor license last July in order to offer video gaming and slot machines, has asked that the Village repeal this section.
Attorney Welch explained that Ron’s Reels or others might try to make a case that the code places “content-based prohibitions on speech.” That is, it’s prohibiting speech that relates to gaming. Welch is continuing to review the matter.
If the code is repealed, any restaurant or bar in Lansing that offers gaming would be allowed to begin advertising such.
Maintaining the character of the community
There has been some discussion about amending the code, rather than outright repealing it. For example, perhaps the code could be amended to allow print advertising but not signage, in an effort to maintain the family-friendly character of the community.
Attorney Welch will continue to research the matter before bringing it back to the Board for final action.
Contacting your reps
Lansing residents may express opinions about gaming, advertising, or any other municipal issues by clicking to contact their representatives directly:
- Email Mayor Patty Eidam, or call 708-895-7208
- Email Trustee Tony Delaurentis, or call 708-832-4569
- Email Trustee Maureen Grady-Perovich, or call 708-832-4563
- Email Trustee Brian Hardy, or call 708-832-4564
- Email Trustee Mike Manno, or call 708-832-4566
- Email Trustee Mike Skrbina, or call 708-832-4568
- Email Trustee Jerry Zeldenrust, or call 708-832-4570
Village Board meetings and Committee of the Whole meetings take place at the Municipal Court Complex (the police station) at 2710 170th Street on the first and third Tuesdays of the month. The next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, February 20, at 7:00pm.