LITTLE ROCK — Secretary of State Mark Martin on Friday issued an administrative declaration denying a challenge to the constitutionality of a ballot proposal that would authorize casino-style tables in four counties in the state.
Elizabeth Williams of Little Rock filed the challenge against the proposed constitutional amendment by Nancy Todd’s Poker Palace LLC, in June. In the challenge she questioned how the tax revenues from the casinos in Crittenden, Franklin, Pulaski and Miller counties would be distributed and said the proposal was unfair because it would give Todd’s Poker Palace LLC a monopoly.
Martin, based on a recommendation from Attorney General Dustin McDaniel’s office, which reviewed Williams’ claims, rejected the challenge.
A second challenge to the proposed constitutional amendment is still being reviewed by the attorney general’s office.
In that challenge, filed earlier this week, Stop Casinos Now alleges the plan envisioned in Todd’s proposed amendment is illegal and misleading. Stop Casinos Now, a coalition of law enforcement, community leaders and elected officials opposed to casinos in Arkansas, argues the proposal did not properly inform voters that it would repeal the state’s ban on monopolies.
One of the primary backers of Stop Casinos Now is Delaware North, owner of Southland Greyhound Park in West Memphis, which operates electronic games of skill.