Slot machine gambling might well be the "greatest thing" imaginable for Baltimore County's non-profit groups, as one VFW commander charges. But the same surely cannot be said for the county as whole.
The slot-machine proposal, slated to be introduced in the 1991 General Assembly, is on hold to give the Hayden administration time to take a position. The county's new executive, hard-pressed for dollars, may indeed find the notion appealing: Under the provisions of the bill crafted for this session, the non-profits would be required to give half the money they took in from the machines to charity. That, no doubt, would ease budgeting pressures at least a bit. And no doubt the money would go to worthy causes.
But legalizing slot machines could open the door to all manner of abuse -- not the least of which could be skimming and under-reporting of profits. More than that, non-profit organizations, many of which serve or allow members to bring alcohol, would have an unfair competitive edge over for-profit taverns.