With the arrival of July, new relaxed regulations took effect on Iowa’s riverboat casinos that will allow the boats to be decommissioned by the Coast Guard, since they’ll no longer have to cruise on the open water to keep their gambling licenses. Nancy Donovan, general manager of two floating casinos in the Quad Cities, says she plans to keep both boats certified for cruising.Donovan says “Decommissioning the boat really devalues the vessel and even though the law allows us, at this point, to put in barges, our current plans do not call for that change anytime soon.” Donovan runs the Rhythm City riverboat, docked in Davenport, and the Isle of Capri in Bettendorf. Employees at other Iowa riverboats express concern over the law change. As boats are decommissioned, boat owners will be faced with firing captains and all other personnel needed to cruise.
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