Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Iowa's Costly Casino Buying Policy

In March 2005 Iowa’s Gaming Commission enacted measured designed to limit Iowa casinos from purchasing supplies from firms with no physical presence in Iowa. This has the impact of forcing non-Iowa firms to locate a shell office in Iowa, or to lose sales normally made to casinos. For example, Omaha Steaks of Nebraska recently opened a Council Bluffs, Iowa office in order to sell food supplies to Iowa casinos. With one employee, it is clear that their presence in Iowa was made for non-business related purposes. That is to satisfy the demands of Iowa’s increasingly restrictive casino buying policies.

These newer more restrictive policies have the impact of increasing the costs to the casinos as firms must charge higher prices to cover their higher costs. By restraining trade, these new measures are a clear violation of the U.S. Constitution and should be challenged by non-Iowa firms. As I was recently quoted in an Omaha World-Herald
http://www.omaha.com/index.php?u_pg=46&u_sid=1351490 article, "this policy is wacky."

Ernie Goss

No comments: