Governor Chet Culver spent much of the past week warning Iowans that a winter storm would be bearing down on the state on Thursday, yet one state government agency went ahead with a meeting and public hearing in southwest Iowa anyway. The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission held its monthly meeting Thursday morning at the casino in Osceola.
On its agenda was an opportunity for the public to comment on whether the commission should allow more gambling enterprises in the state. Over the noon-hour on Thursday, Culver was asked why the commission went ahead with its meeting when the governor had been advising Iowans to stay off the roads.
"That’s a good question for the Racing and Gaming Commission," Culver said. "…We have been urging people to be prepared for this storm." The chairwoman of the Racing and Gaming Commission talked with Radio Iowa by phone on Thursday afternoon. She left Osceola after the commission’s meeting adjourned, but was stuck in Des Moines and couldn’t drive to her home in Council Bluffs because of the blizzard conditions along I-80 in western Iowa. The administrator of the Racing and Gaming Commission was not in his office Friday and unavailable to comment.