It is a very targeted bill that the senators were to examine on Tuesday, May 16. The text proposes to broaden the conditions that must be met by cities wishing to host a casino, as can already be done by seaside or spa towns. A request presented in the name of the necessary “fight against territorial inequalities” but whose scope would be limited. And even very limited.
The text only targets the municipalities “historic sites of the black frame and national stud farms which organized, for five years before January 1, 2023, at least ten horse racing events with national or international influence per year”. Difficult to target more…
The initiators of the project do not hide that only two municipalities would be eligible: Arnac-Pompadour in Corrèze and Saumur in Maine-et-Loire. Two cities that have in common to host many activities related to horses. And to desperately seek resources to finance them.
Pompadour, a world famous castle
The opening of a casino in Arnac-Pompadour is “a sea serpent” which has emerged periodically for years, recalls the newspaper La Montagne. The idea would be to take advantage of the comfortable tax revenue that a gambling establishment would bring to save “a declining horse industry”.
World famous for its castle, offered by Louis XV to his favorite at the same time as the title of marquise, the city indeed lives a lot from the horse. Arnac-Pompadour, a small town of barely 1,100 inhabitants and once the seat of the National Stud Farm, is home to the Pompadour National Stud Farm and a very active racecourse.
Saumur and the Black Frame
The situation is a little different in Saumur. The sub-prefecture of Maine-et-Loire has more than 25,000 inhabitants. Its economy is obviously more diversified than that of Pompadour, but the city is also turned towards the horse with the prestigious Black Frame. Stemming from the military cavalry, the institution now brings together civilian and military riders who train the instructors of the National Riding School.
In this city, the idea of setting up a casino has also periodically come to the fore for several decades. The LREM deputy from Maine, Laëtitia Saint-Paul, who tabled a bill to this effect in the National Assembly last November, justified the creation of a casino by the link between equestrian activities and “the world of gambling. and bets”. An alliance of rider and dealer, horse and one-armed bandit.