The Forest Park Village Council recently chose to lift the ban on video gambling. This, after a water bill survey that rejected gambling, an advisory referendum that rejected gambling, and a petition effort that gathered nearly 3,000 signatures to put the question “Shall video gaming be prohibited in Forest Park?” on the ballot. An effort that was stymied by legal maneuvering. The village council chose to satisfy the wants of a few, instead of giving the voters a chance to decide what they want for their village.
A renewed effort by the petition circulators is now being met with an attempt to once again subvert the chance for voters to weigh in. Paid petition circulators have been hired by people who, for now, are choosing to remain hidden. They are circulating petitions in an effort to crowd the gambling petition off the ballot. While the gambling petition requires 25 percent of active and inactive registered voters, about 2,600 people, these new petitions only need 8 percent of people who voted in the gubernatorial election, about 350 people. Only three questions are allowed on the ballot, and whoever gathers their signatures first, gets on the ballot.
This is a transparent attempt to once again do an end-run around the voters. We hope the citizens of Forest Park will reject this blatant attempt to usurp their choices and their right to have a voice and a vote. We hope they will recognize this underhanded ploy for what it is, and that they make their wish for a vote known by signing the video gambling petition.
Volunteer petition circulators wearing green vests were at all polling places on Election Day. Also look for them in the coming weeks going door to door. If anyone would like to volunteer to circulate a petition, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Say yes to a vote!