When St. Clair County decided to allow video gambling in the unincorporated areas, County Board members didn't have to say "yea" or "nay." They hid behind an old ordinance that allowed the machines by default.
But there was no place for the Swansea trustees and especially Mayor Jim Rauckman to hide last week when the village reconsidered video gambling. If it was difficult before to say no the fraternal clubs and liquor establishments that wanted the machines plus turn down a new source of revenue for the village, it was even more difficult in the wake of the county's action.
The Swansea vote was 3-3, which left Rauckman to break the tie. He voted with the residents who opposed gambling. Hooray.
Agree or disagree, give village leaders credit for not trying to duck a tough decision. St. Clair County leaders, are you paying attention?