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Posts under ‘Jackpot!’

Just a reminder that “more gambling” does not necessarily mean “more revenue”

If Atlantic City can go bust… The winning streak has run cold for Atlantic City, N.J. Earlier this week, the upscale Revel Casino Hotel announced it will close, bringing the total number of casinos in the city expected to close by the end of the year to four. Thousands of workers are confronting unemployment. The […]

A cautionary tale about expanded gambling

Wonkblog: Earlier this week, Delaware’s casinos got a surprise windfall. Just days after saying no to tax breaks, Gov. Jack Markell (D) proposed that $8 million of the state’s budget surplus be distributed amongst its three struggling establishments, to forestall the layoffs that at least one of them had threatened. That would seem to defeat […]

More on the potential Coushatta casino

The Houston Press cover story from last week is about the Alabama-Coushatta tribe’s efforts to get a casino again. It covers a lot of the same ground as that Chron story I blogged about on Sunday, but it also reminds us of a very sordid aspect of the original casino and why it was closed. […]

The federal option for gambling expansion in Texas

There is a way to expand gambling in Texas without going through the Legislature. For decades the Alabama-Coushatta Tribe fought hard to make the federal government acknowledge that it illegally developed more than 5 million acres of the tribe’s aboriginal land. The East Texas tribe eventually won when a court said Congress owed the tribe […]

It may not matter where the casinos are

I don’t know if the gambling industry will finally gain traction in their effort to legally expand operations in Texas, but I do wonder if they’re fighting the last war and missing out on what’s happening now elsewhere in the country. Silicon Valley is betting that online gambling is its next billion-dollar business, with developers […]

More on the economic effect of casinos

I’m just noting this for the record, since I am sure that gambling expansion will come up again in The Lege this spring. Melissa Kearney, an economist at the University of Maryland, released a literature review in 2005 summarizing work on gambling done to date. A study by Maryland’s William Evans and Julie Topoleski that […]

The state would like for the counties to enforce the law against eight-liners

Apparently, some legislators who don’t much like gambling had a few things to say about that article about eight-liners. “Eight-liners that provide cash prizes are against the law, and the law needs to be enforced,” [State Sen. Dan] Patrick said in a statement. “Without oversight, illegal game rooms become hot spots for crime.” Patrick noted […]

Counties are skirting the state on gambling, too

When eight-liners are outlawed, cities and counties will tend to look the other way rather than try to deal with enforcing the laws against them. Some of the money has arrived at the Duval County building in five-figure money orders or checks. But much of it has been in cash. This past April, county Treasurer […]

Baccarat

I’m fascinated by this story. Hours after a judge ordered the Golden Nugget Atlantic City to let gamblers cash in nearly $1 million worth of chips they won in a card game where the decks were unshuffled, the casino’s owner overruled his lawyers Friday and agreed to make the payments. The judge’s decision drew an […]

Ending the Lottery?

Seems unlikely, but that won’t stop some folks from trying. As lawmakers look at whether the Texas Lottery Commission is operating effectively, influential Baptists are suggesting that the lottery shouldn’t merely be tweaked. They want it abolished. “Ask the pertinent questions. Has the lottery fulfilled its promise? My answer would be ‘no,’” said Suzii Paynter, […]

Anti-tax zealots plump for casinos

Gambling yes! Grover Norquist, the nation’s most prominent anti-tax crusader, wrote a letter last week to Texas legislators to call for expanded gambling. “In light of the adverse economic impact that higher taxes would have, it is imperative that lawmakers consider all other options for balancing the state’s budget,” Norquist wrote. “There are a number […]

Casinos expanding nationally

I have no idea what the political or budgetary climate will be like for the gambling industry here in Texas when the Lege next convenes in 2013, but they have been gaining a lot of ground elsewhere in the country. States have embraced casinos, after years of trepidation about their societal costs, for two simple […]

A step forward for online gambling

Interesting. The Justice Department has reversed its long-held opposition to many forms of Internet gambling, removing a big legal obstacle for states that want to sanction online gambling to help fix their budget deficits. The legal opinion, issued by the department’s office of legal counsel in September but made public on Friday, came in response […]

We do have casino gambling in Texas

With all the talk about slot machines at horse racing tracks and legalized casinos, it’s easy to forget that there already is one legal casino in Texas. As the busloads of seniors and other low rollers pulled in from San Antonio for a day of gaming at the Lucky Eagle Casino, demolition crews were busy […]

States looking at online gambling

Until the economy returns to the point where states aren’t completely strapped for revenue, I expect them to look at all possible sources of new money. It’s an idea gaining currency around the country: virtual gambling as part of the antidote to local budget woes. The District of Columbia is the first to legalize it, […]

Bad times are good for the Lottery

Some people might consider this to be good news, but I don’t. This year, the Texas Lottery Commission’s sales are headed for a record high, on pace to reach about $3.83 billion, up from $3.74 billion last year. The previous high was $3.77 billion, in 2006. Lottery spending is also up in Harris County. Sales […]

The bingo business

Really interesting story about how bingo, which is legal in Texas as a charitable fundraiser, operates without a whole lot of scrutiny. In June 2006, police responded to a call from Daytime Bingo Hall in Midland reporting that $100,000 in cash was missing from a floor safe. As investigators began digging into the apparent theft, […]

Casinos look to the Internet

Interesting. Many of the country’s largest casinos, long opposed to gambling games like poker on the Internet, are now having second thoughts. Although online gambling is popular with millions of Americans, it is illegal in the United States, and the casino industry has considered it a threat. But a trade group that represents major casinos […]

The state of the Lottery

The Statesman has an interesting two-part story about the state of the Texas Lottery today. Part One is about the declining fortunes of Lotto Texas and what that means for the state’s finances: Consider: • In 1994, 70 percent of adult Texans reported buying tickets. Today, it’s closer to 40 percent, meaning the lottery must […]

Lottery can’t meet its jackpots

Oops. Lottery officials are celebrating an uptick in Lotto Texas sales this year, but ticket proceeds were nearly $1.2 million short of covering the latest winning jackpot, forcing officials to dip into the state lottery account to cover the difference. The shortage for the advertised $21 million jackpot that hit on July 31 was not […]

The limits of gambling

People who like to gamble have a lot more options available to them than they used to. The Marcuses’ three-day pilgrimage had taken them across a region suddenly awash in slot parlors and Las Vegas-style casinos, what with New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Delaware and Pennsylvania getting in on the action. And the competition between […]

Who wants to run the Texas Lottery?

The contract is up for a bid, and the competition is fierce. Companies that run lotteries around the world are expected to ante up by this week, proposing how they would oversee the Texas Lottery if they were to land its lucrative operations contract. The Texas contract, currently held by Gtech Corp., rarely comes up […]

The stalking horse

Peggy Fikac brings up a familiar point about expanded gambling. [Rob Kohler, a Texas Baptist Christian Life Commission consultant working against gambling expansion] suspects the gambling talk is paving the way for a new push to lease the state lottery to private interests, who would give Texas a big up-front payment in return for being […]

You can now waste your money on Powerball

As of this week, Powerball tickets are now available in Texas. In case you’re tempted to buy one, here’s how good your chances are of winning. The odds for hitting the Powerball jackpot are 1 in 195,249,054. That’s right, 195 million and change. Which makes the chances for winning it all in Mega Millions (1 […]

Here comes Powerball

Powerball will come to Texas as soon as January 31 after a unanimous vote approving sales of its tickets by the Texas Lottery Commission. “What the Legislature has charged us to do is to raise revenue, and this is going to increase the amount that we can send to the education fund by $35 million,” […]

Texas to get Powerball

The Texas Lottery Commission is fixing to bring Powerball to Texas. The commission unanimously voted to publish rules for the game for public comment. If the panel gives final approval to the rules early next year, the first Powerball ticket could be sold in Texas on Jan. 31. Texas already is part of the Mega […]

Scratch EZ Match

I can’t say this comes as a surprise. EZ Match is a scratch. The Texas Lottery Commission pulled the plug Friday on the proposed game that would have allowed players to become instant winners by handing their money to a clerk for a ticket printed from a lottery terminal. Commission staff had described the game […]

With more gambling comes more problem gambling

The never asleep gambling industry in Texas likes to point out how much business the casinos in Oklahoma and Louisiana get, which includes a hefty amount from Texans. But as gambling becomes more prevalent, so do gambling addictions. Tribal casinos have grown in size and number since voters in 2004 approved a law expanding tribal […]

One step closer to expanded gambling in Texas?

Maybe, though I’m not sure how much closer this really gets us. [The] Chickasaw Nation of Oklahoma is poised to take possession of an existing horse racing track in Grand Prairie. The tribe runs one of the biggest Indian casinos in the United States, just across the Texas border. Gambling proponents believe the tribe may […]

Now you can blow your money on lottery tickets even faster

Is it just me, or does this sound like much ado about not very much? A proposed lottery game that would allow players to become instant winners (or losers) without so much as scratching a ticket is under fire from critics who contend it would be a giant step toward slot machines. Under the proposed […]

The fifty dollar flop

Why lotteries make me queasy, continued

The state of the lottery: Booooooring!

Lottery sales down