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Posts Tagged ‘slot machines’

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 […]

That’ll just about do it for gambling this session

Sen. Carona calls the chances “slim”, but it sounds like slim just left town to me. [Sen. John] Carona, chairman of the Senate’s Business and Commerce Committee, said last week he expected to vote his sweeping gambling bill out of his committee Tuesday. But the morning committee hearing came and went, and Carona declined to […]

Gambling interests narrow their focus

This is usually how it goes. Let Texans Decide, a pro-gambling organization that is fronted by former state Sen. John Montford, was aligned at the beginning of the 2013 legislative session with big casino interests in a call for full-scale casino gambling in Texas, whether at horse and dog tracks or at yet-to-be-built destination resort […]

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 […]

Gambling has always polled well

In addition to their self-reported efforts to work together, the pro-gambling expansion forces have released a poll showing public sentiment on their side. A poll paid for by Let Texans Decide, a pro-gambling group made up of interests that wanted slot machines at racetracks last session, asked 1,001 registered voters in Texas: “Regardless of your […]

One big happy pro-gambling expansion family

If the pro-gambling forces in the state all join hands and agree to work together, will this finally be the year that gambling expansion gets a vote? Maybe. John Montford, chairman of Let Texans Decide, a coalition of gaming companies, track operators, trade groups and others who want Texas to legalize casinos, has met with […]

Time once again to talk about expanded gambling

There’s a legislative session coming up, right? That can only mean one thing: A new effort to expand gambling in Texas. Track and gaming interests say voters should be allowed to decide whether to give Texas a shot at the benefits of $2.5 billion they say is wagered in surrounding states annually by Texans. “They […]

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 […]

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 […]

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, […]

The racetracks have given up on gambling for this session

Here’s a clear answer for those of you who may have been holding out some hope for an expansion of gambling. Retama Park officials have all but lost hope that lawmakers will act before the end of the regular legislative session to let voters decide whether to legalize slot machines at state racetracks. While a […]

Some gambling advances in the House

It’s probably too little too late, but you never know. A Texas House committee surprised the casino lobby Friday night when it voted out legislation that would allow video lottery terminals — slot machines — at state racetracks and Indian reservations. The casinos were left behind. Casino interests wanted any legislation approved by the House […]

House says it may be close to approving expanded gambling

This would be as far as they’ve gotten in recent sessions. Rep. Mike “Tuffy” Hamilton, R-Mauriceville, who chairs the Licensing and Administrative Procedures committee, said he is close to having enough votes to pass his ever-morphing gambling bill. As Hamilton seeks to gather a comfortable number of “aye” votes, he and his committee members have […]

Gambling interests tout job creation benefits

From the inbox: REPORT OUTLINES 77.5K JOBS BY REGION, SECTOR CREATED BY SLOTS BILL Confirms Texans Continue To Spend Billions Gaming in Neighboring States AUSTIN, Texas – Win For Texas released a new report today outlining the specific regions and sectors of the 77,500 new, permanent jobs that will be created when slots are allowed […]

Horse racing folks feeling good about gambling’s chances this time

They always say that, but maybe this time they’re right. The chief executive officer at Retama Park expressed cautious optimism Thursday that the state could one day allow slot machines at horse racetracks, a move that has long been deemed as critical to the financial well-being of a struggling industry in Texas. Retama CEO Bryan […]

Legislation to allow slot machines filed

Fresh from the inbox: BI-PARTISAN LEGISLATION FILED TO ALLOW STATEWIDE VOTE ON SLOTS AT TEXAS TRACKS, INDIAN RESERVATIONS AUSTIN, Texas — Texas State Senator Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa (D-McAllen) and Texas State Representative Beverly Woolley (R-Houston) filed legislation today to allow Texas voters to decide whether to allow slot machines at existing horse and greyhound tracks […]

The gambling industry keeps trying

I’m not sure how successful an approach this will be, but I guess it’s better than nothing. Expanding gaming requires a vote of two-thirds of the legislature, with voters getting the final say. A new poll done for the Chronicle and the state’s other major newspapers found 60 percent favored an expansion of gaming. Expanding […]

Expanded gambling: Still doomed

The Dallas Morning News does a little checking, and the math isn’t good for gambling fans. The Dallas Morning News, canvassing all lawmakers, found that expanded gambling lacks the votes, mostly because of objections to social ills and new tax revenue being too far off to help now. The results may indicate that the Legislature, […]

More on SHRP’s investment partner

I mentioned before that Sam Houston Race Park is getting an investor that will help them with the push to expand gambling in Texas. Here’s some more about the investor and the push. The Philadelphia-area company [Penn National] is, at least, expert at shoehorning electronic gaming into existing race tracks. It has a glowing record […]

SHRP gets an investor

File this under “general gambling news”. Sam Houston Race Park will announce today it has entered into an ownership and operations agreement with racetrack and gaming giant Penn National Gaming Inc. as Texas track owners prepare to push for expanded gaming options from the Texas Legislature next year. Penn National will acquire a 50 percent […]

Retama Park

Here’s another story about another horse racing track – Retama Park, which is northeast of San Antonio in Selma – hoping to hit the jackpot (as it were) with slot machines. The bit that interests me is this: If slots pass, [Retama CEO Byron] Brown envisions a massive transformation at Retama with an investment of […]

The state of horse racing in Texas

It’s not very bright right now. The Texas Racing Commission faced a packed house Friday in the enclosed confines of the Founder’s Room at Sam Houston Rack Park. They heard a tale of woe from an industry in rapid decline, a decline precipitated by a close escape of Texas dollars flowing across the Sabine and […]

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 […]

Will the racetracks and the casinos work together?

At the very end of this Trib story about more legislative hearings on gambling expansion comes this tidbit: The Win for Texas group — which includes current racetrack owners who’d like to add slot machines and other games to their facilities — is touting that updated study on the “Economic and Tax Revenue Impact of […]

LSG hearing on expanded gambling

The Legislative Study Group held a hearing on Wednesday to start the discussion about the various proposals for expanded gambling in Texas that will be brought to the Lege next year. Racetrack and casino interests that want to expand Texas gambling dangled promises of new tax revenue before lawmakers Wednesday, but faced tough, skeptical questions […]

Poll says people prefer slots to taxes

I don’t think that’s a great revelation – I’d think many people would claim to prefer a bout of the flu to having their taxes raised – but for obvious reasons, this is a noteworthy finding. A new poll conducted for horse track owners indicates that Texans would rather legalize slot machines at race tracks […]

And in case you were wondering about gambling

And to complete this impromptu three-parter about the state’s budget situation, we ask the question “What about gambling?” Lawmakers had been warned to expect a shortfall of at least $11 billion in the next two-year budget period. But Appropriations Chairman Jim Pitts, R-Waxahachie, on Tuesday put the gap at $18 billion — and said lawmakers […]

Filling the void

I’ve heard a number of reasons why we “need” video lottery terminals at horse racing tracks, but this one, espoused by Texas Racing Commission Chair Rolando Pablos, may be the most entertaining. Though he does not gamble, Pablos studied gaming models during postgraduate studies at UH. He continues to study them. He perceives one disconnect […]

The gambling industry is ready for the next legislative session

Bad budget times are fertile ground for those who want to see an expansion of gambling in Texas. “We are planning to lay out our case again to the Legislature,” said Duane Galligher, a spokesman for the Texas Gaming Association, which led the push to bring Las Vegas-style casino gambling to the state during the […]

How are you going to balance the budget?

If you’re thinking that the candidates for Governor are being a bit vague about how they’re going to deal with the looming budget shortfall, you’re not alone. Texas expects a shortfall of at least $12 billion when lawmakers meet to write the next budget, but major candidates for governor have few specifics on how they […]

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 […]

The gambling industry never sleeps

I confess, I hadn’t realized the Chron had a Horse Racing Notebook column, but they do and this one wants to tell you just how awesome slot machines would be at the racetracks if only we’d let them have them. I don’t have any particular interest in rehashing the arguments from the legislative session, when […]