Gamblers in Alabama are still a long way from being able to gamble legally in their state. However, they’ve received some encouraging news lately. The legislation on lottery and casino gaming will once again be introduced in the upcoming session of the Alabama legislature. The goal is to get the measure that will approve gaming in this state in front of the voters before November next year. Still, with the Alabama primaries coming up this spring, the faith of the proposal is yet to be decided.
New Gambling Proposal in the Works
The Republican Senator Greg Albritton recently said that he plans to bring forward the constitutional amendment proposal before the next session. The proposal will cover a couple of gaming, gambling, and betting elements. It will include a state lottery provider, an agreement with the Poarch Band of Creek Indians, and other gambling sites.
Albritton noted that this is something that Alabama simply needs to get off its plate. They have to catch up with other states who have already made gambling legal. He added that the matter should be resolved as soon as possible and that waiting another year won’t do any good to anyone. Each day that passes means that potential revenue is being thrown away.
Alabama Senate Approves A State Lottery And 9 Casinos?
Some of the state officials tried to pass a similar proposal last year but ultimately failed. The proposal was supposed to establish a state lottery and approve up to 9 casinos in Alabama. However, after it was approved by the Alabama Senate, the constitutional amendment on legal gambling got stalled at the House of Representatives. Albritton noted that he’s determined to gather enough votes this time. The senator is already involved in the ongoing discussions concerning the new proposal.
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Not Everyone Supports the New Amendment
On the other hand, some members of the state’s Republican leaders are more reserved when it comes to the success of any new gambling legislation. With primaries coming in May 2022, both the election and time constraints could hinder the proposal plans. Rep. Steve Clouse, who’s the chairman of the House general fund budget committee doubts that such a piece of legislation could pass in the election year.
Vice-Chairman of the Poarch Band of Creek Indians Tribal Council, Robbie McGhee, said that the final decision lies with not the lawmakers, but voters statewide. He added that this is the perfect opportunity for lawmakers to give the decision-making power to the people.
Video On Alabama gambling bill passes house committee From May 2021
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A Gambling Monopoly?
The reasons why previous attempts failed were the mix of the opposition by more conservative state representatives and the disagreements among the owners of gambling establishments. Some of the owners of the gaming facilities such as dog tracks and electronic bingo opposed the proposal. They felt it would practically give monopoly offer gambling operations to Poarch Creeks tribal nation.
Last Years Gambling Legislation
Last year’s bill that passed the Senate included certain provisions to please this group of owners. Besides authorizing tribal casinos, it was supposed to give the owners of the existing dog tracks and electronic bingo parlors an advantage when trying to obtain casino licenses. At the moment, it’s still unclear what this year’s proposal would mean for those sites.