Prairie Meadows Race Track and Casino has rejected a deal that’d end the controversy over state taxes. Legislators and the Governor say a 30 percent tax rate on tax profits is their final offer. Bob Farinella, the president, G-M and C-E-O of Prairie Meadows, says his track would accept a 28 percent tax rate — if it gets permission to offer table games like the riverboats. Farinella says Prairie Meadows wants to be treated equally with the riverboats.Farinella says if lawmakers won’t accept his deal, the track will wait for its lawsuit against the state to be decided by the U-S Supreme Court. Farinella rejects the contentions of legislators who say his organization has been unwilling to compromise and hasn’t fully participated in negotiations on the taxation issue. The tracks today may only offer slot machines, and they’re pressing lawmakers to change state law and allow Black Jack, craps and other table games. Governor Vilsack says Prairie Meadows’ proposal was presented to him and legislators in private a couple of weeks ago — and rejected.Vilsack says “the dealer’s showin’ 20” to Prairie Meadows, and he doesn’t think they’re going to “hit 21” with their latest gambit. House Speaker Christopher Rants, a republican from Sioux City, agrees.Rants says Prairie Meadows is asking the state to allow them to make more money, but pay less taxes, and then ask Iowans to accept cuts in state natural resource and environmental programs. Rants says that’s not a deal Iowans would want to take. Rants says legislators and the governor have made it very clear they want a revenue-neutral plan, but the track has not gone along. Rants says Prairie Meadows has never come forward with a revenue-neutral program and he says the proposal to give them table games is “crazy”. Rants says it looks like there won’t be a decision until the U-S Supreme Court issues a ruling.Rants says they missed their deadline three weeks ago when they walked out of the governor’s office. Senate Republican Leader Steward Iverson of Dows says he’ll wait ’till Monday at five P-M for the track’s final answer. That’s the deadline Iverson set for a decision.
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