(SPRINGFIELD) Statewide voters chose their top “unforgettable moments” over the past two weeks in the final Illinois Top 200 category voting online. The death, mourning, and funeral of President Abraham Lincoln topped the list, followed by the Chicago Cubs and their 2016 World Series victory at #2. Coming in at #3 was Illinois becoming the first state to ratify the constitutional amendment ending slavery and by Lewis & Clark starting their famous expedition to the west at #4. The historic debates between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas came in at #5. Rounding out the others were Illinois becoming the first state east of the Mississippi River to let women vote in 1913 (#6), Barack Obama being elected President for the first time in 2008 (#7), Chicago’s hosting of the World Fair in 1893 (#8), the world’s first nuclear reactor that went into operation in Chicago on December 2, 1942 (#9), and a tie for #10 between the 2008 arrest of Governor Rod Blagojevich on corruption charges and signing of the 1833 Treaty of Chicago when the last Native Americans in Illinois gave up all of their state land. With Illinois celebrating its 200th birthday next Monday, December 3, the Illinois Top 200 is a joint initiative of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, the Springfield State Journal-Register newspaper, and the Illinois Bicentennial Commission.
(SPRINGFIELD) A new state report shows that video gambling has seen significant growth in Illinois with revenues increasing by more than 75 percent over the past three year period. The Chicago Tribune reports that the State’s Commission on Government Forecasting & Accountability found video gambling racked up a net income at $1.4 billion in the fiscal year that ended last June 30, generating about $70 million in tax revenue for local governments. The report notes that video gambling is the driving force behind the overall gambling revenues reaching a record high last year in the Land of Lincoln. The special report also shows that the State Lottery, horse-racing, and river boat gambling have had “relatively stagnant” results.