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Virginia Senate Committee Again Opposes Petersburg Casino Referendum

A statement from LIUNA Vice President and Mid-Atlantic Regional Manager Dennis L. Martire in response to the Virginia Senate Finance and Appropriations Committee's vote on HB 1373.

Reston, Va. (February 17, 2023) - LIUNA applauds the Virginia Senate Finance and Appropriations Committee for stopping another attempt to push through a Petersburg casino referendum that would have left voters in the dark and ignored the needs of working Virginians. The bill, HB 1373, would have moved forward with a referendum in Petersburg despite the secrecy surrounding the selection of a developer to build and operate the casino.

Casino development must ensure the creation of family-supporting jobs that provide opportunities for local residents. The legislators who voted against the Petersburg referendum defended good jobs, and we thank each and every one of those legislators. We particularly commend Senator Louise Lucas for her steadfast leadership and for insisting on a methodical and transparent process that serves the needs of voters and working families.

With this vote, both the state House and Senate bills have been rejected and should not be revisited until those involved are willing to be open and honest about the procurement process.