UPDATE: Sanford-Orlando Kennel Club gives up current pursuit of poker

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The Sanford-Orlando Kennel Club has decided not to try to expand poker at its facility, general manager Mark Loewe told Ante Up today (7/20).

Loewe said the owners of the dog track, Penn National Gaming, gave up on the idea of trying to convince Longwood city commissioners to allow them to add a poker room and other amenities while making numerous concessions.

Loewe said the company didn’t want a county-wide vote for fear a small turnout in a non-election year, plus PNG was at the mercy of the county as far as the wording of the referendum, which would be unfair and could cause voters to vote against their requests.

"As long as (the Longwood city commissioners) continue to go down this path then we are not interested," Loewe said. "First of all, there’s a cost involved for a county-wide vote, and who’s going to pay for that? We still think, legally, it’s a city issue and not a county one. A county vote in a non-election year is generally not well-attended, so then you’d have a small group of people dictating what happens."

Loewe said this isn’t a full withdrawal, but they can’t support a county referendum, so their plans of redevelopment and expansion will be on hold until the city commissioners agree to take this issue on themselves.

For more on this story be sure to pick up the September issue of Ante Up.