Bengals Stadium Poses Casino Hurdle

Stadium lease with Bengals could pose hurdle to Cincinnati casinos

A provision in the Cincinnati Bengals' lease with Hamilton County that bans gambling operations along the city's central riverfront could be a problem for the mayor and others who want to bring riverboat casinos to the city. Mayor Charlie Luken supports casino gambling to help revitalize the city's economy. But a lease agreement negotiated in 1998 prohibits gambling in the central riverfront area that includes Paul Brown Stadium. He is asking the Legislature to allow a statewide vote on casinos in Cincinnati and Cleveland to hold onto some of the money Ohioans spend at Indiana riverboat casinos.

Luken has said that he is aware of the gambling clause in the lease, but thinks it's a problem that could be solved. Bengals spokesman Jack Brennan is declining comment on the matter.