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Sinha challenges casino ‘monopoly’ in Polk Co. to build airport casino

Rajendra “Reggie” Sinha intrigued Iowans last week when the Business Record, reporting on the typically-mundane meeting of the Des Moines International Airport authority, published a piece on his moonshot proposal to construct a $225 million casino with a 350-room hotel at the airport. After tabling the concept at the board’s meeting last week, they will consider moving forward Feb. 11.

Iowa sports betting: ‘Fields of Opportunities’?

Since prohibition ended in mid-August, Iowa’s IRGC-regulated casinos (Iowa’s four tribal casinos, operating under a different regulatory structure, do not offer sports betting) reported a $212.2 million handle—or amount bet—as of Jan. 9. They paid out $192.9 million to winners. Casinos captured $19.3 million in net receipts and transferred more than $1.3 million in taxes to the state, according to IRGC’s fiscal year 2020 revenue report. A staggering $75 million has been bet on sports at Altoona-based Prairie Meadows since the William Hill Sports Book venue opened in August. That handle is more than four times next biggest player, Waterloo-based Isle Casino Hotel Casino, which accepted $18.7 million in bets during the same period.