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Pennsylvania Gambling Bill Passes the House

 

Pennsylvania Gambling Bill Passes the HouseBig news for the gambling industry in Pennsylvania, the biggest gambling expansion bill in Pennsylvania has just passed the Pennsylvania House of Representative with a 109-72 vote.

The new bill which will expand casino-style gambling to truck stops, online portals, airports and to also 10 new mini casino will now be sent to Governor Tom Wolf who will evaluate and make a decision on this new gambling legislation.

This bill has been two years in the making and if Governor Wolf, signs it, it would mean a new era of gambling in Pennsylvania.  This means that Pennsylvania would become the first state to legalize both online casinos and lottery games.

 

The bill was not passed without any complaints as some representatives complained that they Bill was sprung on them at the last minute and they did not have time to go over the 470 page bill thoroughly.  However, lawmakers are hoping to get an extra $200 million a year in revenue from casino licenses, fees and taxes.

Pennsylvania which made $1.4 billion in taxes last year could now being the process of becoming a gambling state that might just surpass New Jersey.  Atlantic City casinos have been hurting since Pennsylvania started opening its own casino operations resulting in the loss of five of its 12 casinos.

Some law makers are concerned about some of the language in the bill as they are very broad such as the part where a truck stop being allowed to operate up to 5 slot machines.  Since the definition for a truck stop is so broad, it could really increase the number of slot machines in the state.

As for the Mini-Casino licenses which would allow Casinos in Pennsylvania to open up to 10 satellite casinos with a 750 slot machine and 30 table limit, they would have to bid to get these licenses an the bidding would start at $7.5 million with an additional cost of $2.5 million to add a table games certificate.

On the gambling industry side, this is a huge step, especially of Governor Wolf signs the bill into law.  Several gambling software operation are already thinking about the opportunities this represents for them if the bill was to get signed as it would represent a lot of money in supplying online gambling software to them.

Pennsylvania could be leading the way for the rest of the United States to take steps to legalize gambling in their own state.

 

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