Surprise, but Colorado's Higher Education is lacking money again to the tune of nearly $300 million. Currently, the state provides $104 million each year to higher education. And, our state legislature has an answer. You guessed it-more taxes and more gambling!
Under a new proposal weaving its way through our state legislature, voters may be asked this fall to approve a referendum which will expand the current limited gambling operations in Colorado to bars and restaurants. The target game- Keno, a gambling game which betters select numbers and hope that the computer matches them. Early estimates predict an annual net of between $20 to $100 million if the games prove popular.
Our state's higher education institutions are in a corner. The Federal stimulus money will run out in a year. That leaves painful decisions for school administrators and state lawmakers-cut costs, raise tuition's and reduce the amount of student aid.
While thinking outside of the box for creative funding sources for higher education is admirable, expanding gambling beyond what it is now is obtuse.