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Florida Legislators Considers Allowing Gaming Expansion All Over Florida

For several months, Florida lawmakers have been hesitant about the idea of approving a casino gaming compact with the Seminole Indian Tribe. On November 2nd, 2009, legislators may have given state residents an indication as to why they are having second thoughts. In a surprising turn of events, several legislators indicated that the next step for the future of casino gaming in the state of Florida may be to consult state voters.

The legislators acknowledged that casino gaming is here to stay and said that the best possible option for Florida is take advantage of the games. Republican Ellyn Bogdanoff, (Ft. Lauderdale) said that even though she is a staunch anti-gaming critic, she believes that casino gaming is a permanent fixture in Florida and they might as well make gaming a free market.

Florida legislators are beginning to realize the substantial amounts of revenue that Florida can make if they combine their already growing tourism market with casino gaming resorts. Representative Alan Hays suggested that the state needs to form a gambling commission and that outside casino operators should be contracted to manage casino facilities in Florida. It is a similar plan to the one put in place in the state of Kansas a couple of years ago.

It has long been the Republican officials in Florida that have opposed the gaming compact with the Seminole tribe but judging from their change of heart, it seems that they have an expansion plan all along. Hays added that the Seminole compact has a little chance of being approve.

Rep. Hays said he is sure that they can compete head-to-head with the tribe and that they need to say no to this gaming compact. Whether state legislators move fully forward with their aversion to gaming compact or not, their decision to consider expanded gaming in the state served as an important landmark for


19 November 2009
News Submitted by:
Jessica Kellerman

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