Playing to Lose
Why the Costs of Expanded Gambling are Not Worth the Risk
Claims that gambling is an answer to the state's economic woes ignore gambling's dark underside and the costs North Carolina can expect to pay as a result, as laid out by Lawrence Duke. more
Bringing Las Vegas to North Carolina
Why Expanded Cherokee Gambling is Bad Public Policy
Despite a consistent history of opposition to expanded gambling in North Carolina, the General Assembly is considering amending the compact with the Cherokee Nation in the western part of the State, to allow Las Vegas-style casino game. ADF Blackstone Fellow, Kyle Jensen considers the historical, federal, and state environments in his presentation of the arguments against allowing such an expansion on economic, legal, and social grounds. (Fall 2011)
"Like Deja vu All Over Again"
Attorney Chris Derrick shows where North Carolina stands in its ongoing fight against Video Sweepstakes gambling, and explains why a 2010 ban has not succeeded in shutting down Video Sweepstakes gambling establishments. (Spring 2011)
"It Ain't Over 'Til It's Over"
Video Gambling Returns
Despite a statutory ban on video gambling in North Carolina, a new breed of gambling machines, known as “sweepstakes machines” are spreading like wildfire. Drawing on his experience working with the National Gambling Impact Study Commission and as a corporate attorney representing clients in promotions and sweepstakes matters, Christopher Derrick exposes the underbelly of this subversion of the law. (Spring 2010)
Is the Lottery a Tax? Generating Revenue through State-Sponsored Gambling
Lottery supporters have not traditionally referred to the lottery as a tax. In fact, is has often been promoted as an alternative means of raising money for the state. However, because the purpose of the North Carolina lottery is expressly to raise revenue for the state, and because a portion of the gross revenue is kept by the state to fund public programs, the lottery imposes a tax on any player who purchases a ticket. This paper will explain the lottery tax and why it is a poor way for the state to raise money. (March 2006)
Lottery Lawsuit: Insuring the Integrity of the Legislative Process
A lawsuit has been filed in Wake County Superior Court asking the court to find the Lottery Act unconstitutional and to enjoin the N.C. State Lottery Commission from taking any further action to establish a lottery in North Carolina. The purpose of this paper is to explore the basis of the lawsuit in order to help the citizens of the state understand why it is important. (January 2006)
Expanding Indian Gambling: Could Harrah's Casino Become N.C.'s Atlantic City?
Recently, leaders of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians have proposed to amend their tribal-state compact with North Carolina. This latest amendment would once again expand the parameters of gambling allowed by the compact. The purpose of this paper is to examine the current framework of the tribal-state compact, analyze currently proposed changes, and evaluate the potential effects of the requested expansion. (August 2005)
Losing the Lottery: Why the State Should Not Enter the Gambling Business
For more than 20 years, North Carolina lawmakers have rejected a lottery, and rightfully so. There is a mountain of evidence showing that a lottery is bad public policy because it creates multiple social and economic problems. After all, the lottery is gambling. And if gambling becomes the accepted public policy of this state, there will be negative consequences. This paper reviews these consequences, including the social and economic issues, as well as the constitutional case against a statewide referendum. (March 2005)
Video Gambling: Why A Total Ban Is A Safe Bet
Attempts to regulate video poker continue to prove ineffective as more and more machines are operated illegally. The only solution to the problems caused by video poker machines is to ban them statewide. The following paper will examine the problems with video poker and explain why a total ban is best for North Carolina. (February 2005)
A Lottery Education: Dispelling the Education Lottery Myth
When selling the idea of state-sponsored gambling to the people in a state, one of the most often cited beneficiaries of lottery dollars is education. But behind the images of big money and perceived public good, the realities of a lottery are very different from the images sold to the people. This paper addresses the realities behind the promises of an “education lottery” and explains why state-sponsored gambling will have the opposite effect on education in North Carolina than the public is led to believe. (April 2004)
Lumbee Casino Gambling: Would Another Casino Be Good for North Carolina?
The purpose of this paper is not to endorse or oppose the services and benefits that come with federal tribal recognition, except to the degree that such recognition authorizes federally recognized Indian tribes to conduct gambling operations. While laws and regulations governing Indian casino gambling are complex, the implications to society are simple and clear. Legalized gambling may result in some economic benefit for a few, but it does so at great expense to countless others. (February 2004)
State Lottery Bill Analysis: How a lottery would impact North Carolina
Recent debate regarding a state lottery in North Carolina has focused primarily on the strategy of the gambling promoters to use a non-binding voter referendum to leverage financing and support for a state lottery. What is often overlooked is the authorizing legislation that would face legislators if a referendum passed and they were called to a special session by the governor to pass a lottery. This paper examines the issue of a non-binding referendum and also uncovers some of the pitfalls in the actual legislation that would likely be used to put North Carolina in the gambling business. (July 2002)
Lottery Woes: Talking points on the negative economic and social impact a lottery would have on North Carolina
This issue brief provides a concise treatment of basic arguments against a state lottery. Arguments are pulled from other policy papers and in depth research sources. (June 2002)
Let the People Vote? Why a lottery referendum is still unconstitutional
This paper discusses the legal theory and practical application behind the conclusion that a lottery referendum is unconstitutional in North Carolina. The North Carolina Constitution does not provide for a referendum process for legislation on which the General Assembly already has the authority to act. (May 2002)
Gambling With Our Future: How a State Lottery will harm children
What is the impact on gambling on children? As legislators wrestle with the impact of public policy decisions on a state lottery and talk about using lottery tax proceeds for education programs, they should consider the effect on the lives of children. This paper examines the impact of compulsive gambling on the lives of children who become compulsive gamblers and those who live with a compulsive gambler. (March 2002)
Saying No to Gambling: Excerpts from the 2001 public hearing on a state lottery
This paper contains excerpts transcribed from an audio recording of a public hearing of the House Committee on Rules, Calendars and Operations held on Ocober 1, 2001 at the N.C. General Assembly. Included are Dr. William Friday, former president, the University of North Carolina; Harlan Boyles, former state treasurer; Octavia Rainey, citizen; John Sanders, former director, Institute of Government; Jim Trotter, former general counsel for Governor Jim Martin; Dan Gerlach, director, North Carolina Budget and Tax Center; Bill Brooks, president, North Carolina Family Policy Council; Chris Fitzsimon, executive director, Common Sense Foundation; and Hope Morgan Ward, director of connectional ministries, United Methodist Church. (October 2001)
Gambling Addiction: High Stakes, High Costs and Real Victims
In order to achieve an understanding of the far-reaching effects of this addiction and why policy makers should consider limiting the further expansion of gambling, it is important to examine the prevalence of gambling activities, the forms of compulsive gambling, and the social costs of gambling addiction on the family and society. (January 2001)
Video Gambling: Why a total ban is a safe bet
On July 1, 2000 video poker was banned in South Carolina. Facing a flood of video gambling machines, the North Carolina Senate passed a bill to ban the machines completely from the Tarheel State. In a compromise with the House, a bill was passed which ultimately allowed over 10,000 machines in North Carolina. Testimony from law enforcement officials confirms that many of the problems outlined in this policy paper have come to pass. (July 2000)
Gambling in America: A summary report of the National Gambling Impact Study Commission
On June 18, 1999 the National Gambling Impact Study Commission (NGISC) concluded its two-year exploration into the social and economic impact of legalized gambling in the United States. Their study included among other things, lotteries, electronic gambling devices, casinos, riverboat casinos, tribal gambling and internet gambling. This paper relates some of those findings. (September 1999)
Indian Casino Gambling: What can we expect in the future?
The expansion of Indian gambling, as well as the gambling itself, is a controversial issue that divides citizens and tribal members alike. It is important to acknowledge that this issue poses several political, legal and moral dilemmas. This paper examines the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act and its influence on state and Indian tribe relations; gambling in North Carolina; moral and ethical considerations; and the future of gambling and its impact on North Carolina. (November 1997)
Click here to read the National Gambling Impact Study Commission's final report to Congress on gambling in America.