Facing a humongous estimated $2.6 billion state budget deficit, Washington Governor Christine Gregoire is seriously contemplating expanding the keno lottery game of Washington, her staff confirmed on November 27th, 2009.
Currently, Washington has one keno gaming drawing a day. Governor Gregoire is considering allowing drawings every four minutes on video screens place at pubs and bars across the state.
The state of Oregon also possesses a similar 4-minute keno game. The keno game expansion could raise about $30 million annually for Washington.
Willie Rigney from Vancouver, Washington said that keno is his favorite game. Mr. Rigney is a regular keno enthusiast at Washington's tribal casino facilities. Rigney said that expanding keno to 4-minute keno would be a good option for the state government to raise more money for the budget.
But some critics of Gov. Gregoire's keno plan said that increasing the number of drawing could unfairly target poor individuals and gaming addicts.
Rebecca Smith-Murdock of Olympia said that keno plan is just an easy fix. She said that it will only create more negative results compared with positive results.
Governor Christine Gregoire will release her budget plan within the next two weeks.