Posted: Sep 14, 2012 9:40 AM by AP
Updated: Sep 14, 2012 9:51 AM
NEW IBERIA, La. (AP) - Iberia Parish residents will not have the chance to consider legalizing video poker in the parish during the Nov. 6 election because the item has been removed from the ballot.
The Advocate reports the Iberia Parish Council voted unanimously Wednesday to remove the video poker option from the ballot and then passed a second agenda item asking the state Legislature to authorize such an election for an unspecified date later.
Parish legal adviser Dean Wattingy said video poker was removed from the ballot because the proper procedure is to have the Legislature approve the election before it comes to a parish-wide vote.
At least two residents voiced their opposition to the measure Wednesday night.
The Rev. Ron Perkins, a local pastor, told the council he was opposed to sending the ballot item for approval to the Legislature because parish residents already voted it down in the late 1990s. He asked the council members how much money would be generated.
Councilman Troy Comeaux said he did not have a specific amount of money but thought the construction of video poker facilities and other economic development opportunities could bring millions of dollars to the parish.
Parish resident Will Grubbs told the council the money may not be worth it if it hurts the community.
He said his concern was that people who could not reach surrounding parishes to play video poker currently will be exposed to it should the measure pass and they will waste money they do not have.