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Hooksett council puts Keno on Town Meeting ballot

HOOKSETT — A warrant article will be put before Town Meeting voters asking if they are in favor of allowing Keno.

Town councilors approved the warrant article at their Wednesday meeting.

“I’m OK with putting it on the ballot and letting the citizens decide,” Councilor Marc Miville said. “We’re not condoning it; we’re just putting it on the ballot.”

Councilor Don Winterton echoed the sentiment.

“I think we’re doing the town a disservice if we don’t let the voters decide,” he said.

Chairman Jim Sullivan asked Hooksett Police Chief Janet Bouchard if she had any concerns.

“The simple answer is no,” she said. “I don’t foresee it being an issue here.”

A petition warrant article was also submitted, but it did not have enough signatures to go on the ballot.

Keno is offered in bars, taverns or restaurants — any place that has an active liquor pouring license.

Keno 603 was made a funding source for full-day kindergarten programs this past summer as Gov. Chris Sununu signed Senate Bill 191 into law.

In Keno, players choose from one to 12 numbers. Every five minutes, a computer randomly generates 20 winning numbers from 1 to 80 on a monitor.

A player may place a wager from $1 to $25 per game. The more numbers players match, the more they win.

The revenue from the game provides communities throughout the state with an extra $1,000 per student to help fund full-day kindergarten, another law signed by Sununu.

Hooksett will receive Keno funds even if voters decide not to allow the game to be played in town.

“If we say no to Keno, we still get revenue from Keno,” Councilor Robert Duhaime said.

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