N.H. Cities Weigh Whether to Allow Keno Within Their Borders

Aug 9, 2017

Just weeks after New Hampshire legalized Keno, the state’s lottery commission has started pitching the electronic bingo game to cities across the state.

Under the new law, money raised by Keno will go towards full-day kindergarten programs statewide. But the game will only be allowed in cities and towns that approve it. 

State Lottery Commissioner Charlie McIntyre had a simple message for Nashua’s Board of Aldermen: Authorize Keno in your city and it will mean more money for kindergarten statewide and more traffic for local businesses.

He also noted, numerous times, that Massachusetts has been making millions off New Hampshire residents playing Keno across the border for years.

“Really what it is – is an additional product to sell that a town right near you already does sell and retail behavior knows no geography,” McIntyre said.

Aldermen raised concerns about the amount of money raised from Keno, and questioned whether cities and towns that declined to allow Keno would still see additional money for kindergarten.

The board will decide at its next meeting whether to put Keno before city voters later this year. Lawmakers in Franklin unanimously voted to put Keno on the city ballot earlier this week. Manchester aldermen plan to consider the issue next week.