Stage 5, But Still Behind Without VGTs
Last week, Governor Holcomb announced Indiana would move to the fifth and final stage of the Back on Track Indiana plan. This means bars, taverns and veterans' clubs can now reopen at 100% capacity (with social distancing). Indianapolis relaxed some of these restrictions as well, allowing bars and taverns to open at 50% capacity and resume live entertainment.
Despite moving to stage 5, bars and taverns will continue to struggle for some time to catch up as they recover from months of closures and restrictions. As they continue to fight, they will likely have to do so without the presence of older residents or those with health problems, who may choose to remain at home even as restrictions are lifted, therefore keeping business slower than usual well into 2021.
VGTs for Indiana has been working since 2016 to legalize VGTs in the Hoosier State. Imagine if there had been support from legislators in 2016 for VGTs. Terminals would have landed in bars and taverns sometime in 2017 and would have operated for nearly three years before the pandemic. Bars, taverns and other small businesses that operate at very slim margins could have had additional operating reserves to count on during COVID-19 closures and a steady revenue stream once their establishments reopened. VGTs would have had a positive effect on the sustainability of these small businesses and the livelihood of the people they employ.
Despite all of this, it is still not too late. Legalization of VGTs would give bar and tavern owners hope for their struggling businesses. Contact your legislators today and tell them the positive impact VGTs will have on your business. Visit www.VGTsforIndiana.org for more information.