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Keno is Beginning to Show Up on Many N.H. City Council Agendas


With the electronic gambling game keno now legal in New Hampshire, city governments across the state are starting to consider whether they want it in their communities.

Earlier this week, Franklin became the first New Hampshire city to put keno on the ballot for this October.

In Manchester, the board of alderman will vote next week on whether to put keno before voters in their November elections. And city councilors in Keene, Dover, and Portsmouth are all in various stages of considering it as well.

Brad Lown, a Portsmouth city councilor, says he’d like to have city residents have the final say.

“I’ve asked that it placed on the agenda again at the next meeting so that we can have a discussion about whether to put it on the ballot in November," Lown said. "I just think the taxpayers have a right to weigh in on this.”

Meanwhile the head of the state’s gambling commission, Charles McIntyre, has been making the rounds, giving information sessions on keno to city leaders.

Under the new law, a majority of money raised by keno will fund grants for full-day kindergarten programs. Towns and cities do not have to approve keno to be eligible for the kindergarten grants.

Jason Moon is a senior reporter and producer on the Document team. He has created longform narrative podcast series on topics ranging from unsolved murders, to presidential elections, to secret lists of police officers.

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