Video Poker Bill Dies In Committee
Special Report - June 28, 2012
Proposed legislation that would legalize video poker by taxing sweepstakes gambling in North Carolina appears to have stalled in the General Assembly, at least for now. HB 1180-Video Sweepstakes Entertainment Tax, which is sponsored by Rep. Bill Owens (D-Pasquotank), has not been considered in the House Finance Committee this week. House Speaker Thom Tillis (R-Mecklenburg) told reporters that the bill is unlikely to be voted upon this session, which is scheduled to end early next week. "There are a lot of legitimate questions raised about it," the Fayettevile Observer quotes Speaker Tillis as saying. "And as a part of tax reform next year, I suspect that's something that we'll look at, at that time. But that's something I don't see moving for the remainder of this session."
HB 1180 would essentially legalize the existing video sweepstakes gambling establishments across North Carolina, and authorize an unlimited number of new establishments with an unlimited number of gambling machines (up to 170,000 according to legislative staff estimates), almost all of which allow access to video poker. The bill was one of several bills to expand gambling that were introduced during the 2012 “Short” Legislative session and promoted by Governor Beverly Perdue. As we previously reported, only one day after she signed a bill into law that legalizes Las-Vegas style casinos in Western North Carolina, Governor Perdue issued a statement, calling on the General Assembly to regulate and tax sweepstakes gambling establishments.
For now, it appears the fate of the hundreds of sweepstakes gambling cafes in North Carolina will be decided by the State Supreme Court, where two lawsuits challenging a 2010 law that prohibits video sweepstakes gambling are currently pending. To learn more about the issue of video sweepstakes gambling, including why the 2010 law passed by the General Assembly has not succeeded in shutting down sweepstakes cafes, download and read Attorney Chris Derrick’s Spring 2011 article in Family North Carolina, “’Like Déjà vu All Over Again.’” You can also download the NCFPC’s recent issue brief on HB 1180, here.
Bill Would Legalize Video Poker - June 25, 2012
Governor Perdue Wants More Gambling - June 8, 2012
N.C. Appeals Court Strikes Sweepstakes Ban - March 8, 2012
AG Issues Sweepstakes Ban Advisory - December 6, 2011
Competing Gambling Bills Filed - March 9, 2011
Bill Filed To Broaden Sweepstakes Ban - January 28, 2011
Court Won't Stay Gambling Ruling - January 1, 2011
Attorney General's Advisory Letter - December 2, 2010
Gambling Ban Moves Ahead - November 30, 2010
Sweepstakes Lawsuits Dropped - October 26, 2010
Injunction On Internet Gambling Fees - October 18, 2010
Gambling Operators Sue Cities - August 13, 2010
Perdue Signs Gambling Ban Bill - July 22, 2010
House Passes Video Gambling Ban - July 8, 2010
It Ain’t Over Til It’s Over: Video Gambling Returns to North Carolina - FNC- April 2010
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