Michigan voters would weigh in on a constitutional amendment allowing seven new casinos across the state under a proposal unveiled last week.
The ballot initiative, which is being pushed by a group called Michigan Is Yours, would allow casinos to be built in Grand Rapids, Lansing, Romulus, Benton Harbor, Saginaw, and Mount Clemens.
Detroit currently has three casinos.
The group has 180 days to collect 300,000 signatures to get the measure on the November 2012 ballot.
The proposal calls for a 19% wagering tax. A chunk of the revenue would go to the cities where the casinos are located. Up to 20% of additional revenue would be used to “fully and permanently” fund the Michigan Promise Grant, a scholarship program for high school graduates, and the popular but struggling Pure Michigan tourism advertising campaign, according to the Michigan Is Your’s website.
The remainder of the tax money would be distributed among the local and county governments where the casinos are located.
“The casino gaming industry, if done right, creates jobs and economic development,” the group said in a statement issued after a press conference held last Thursday in Romulus.