New Par-A-Dice GM Weighs in on Gambling Expansion Bill

By Anna Yee

June 2, 2011 Updated Jun 2, 2011 at 10:46 PM CDT

City officials say it's been a huge tourist attraction and source of revenue.

Last year, the casino paid more than $7 million in local taxes and about $27 million in state taxes.

But more competition could water down the revenue stream.

If Governor Quinn signs the new gambling bill, five more casinos could be built in Illinois.

Cori Rutherford, the Par-A-Dice Vice President & General Manager, says Par-A-Dice draws more business from downstate cities, not so much from Chicago.

If expansion does occur, one of the five casinos built will be in Danville- just two hours away from East Peoria.

Rutherford says keeping local competition away is not just good for business.

"The amount of tax dollars and things that we generate to give back to the community," continued Rutherford, "Par-A-Dice gives back to the community in so many ways- and I would say that it is for entertainment."

Last year, Par-A-Dice gave more than $600,000 in charitable donations, with the majority going to Central Illinois.

On another note... Rutherford, a Peoria-area native, is only the fourth woman and youngest person to hold a GM position throughout more than a dozen Boyd Gaming casinos nationwide.