Columbus Casino Move Campaign Proved Expensive

Listen to the Story

The effort to move the Columbus casino from the Arena District to the city’s west side proved expensive.

The campaign Vote Yes on Issue 2 spent more than $3.9 million to get voters to approve the change in address of the Columbus casino. The efforts paid off when Issue 2 passed last month.

More than $4.2 million was contributed to the campaign. Penn National Gaming, which owns the casino, was the largest contributor with more than $2 million in donations. Nationwide Realty Investors contributed more than $1 million dollars. American Electric Power donated $500,000. Wolfe Enterprises Incorporated, a Columbus Dispatch holding company, contributed $400,000. And the Dispatch Printing Company contributed more than $68,000 worth of advertising for the campaign.

Some smaller contributors included Ohio State University president E. Gordon Gee and Central Ohio Transit Authority president Bill Lhota who each gave $250.

There is about $139,000 left over after the expenses were paid. Issue 2 Campaign spokesperson Bob Tenenbaum said the balance will be saved in case of any outstanding debts or it could be returned to contributors.