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Debates brew over gambling legalisation in Nebraska and Connecticut

TAGs: Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling, Gamblign legalisation, Legislature’s General Affairs Committee, Nebraska

Nebraska ConnecticutEarlier this month we reported on the Nebraskan Senator Paul Schumacher of Columbus, and how he had introduced a constitutional amendment that would allow for casinos if bordering states South Dakota and Iowa don’t share their gambling tax revenues.

A recent report by ArgusLeader has revealed that Schumacher  told the Legislature’s General Affairs Committee yesterday that his measure would also help Nebraska cover the cost of education programs and roads. However, the idea doesn’t look too promising. Not only have Nebraskans rejected plenty of gambling proposals in the past ten years, but yesterday, gambling opponents argued his measure was merely a ploy to blackmail border states and outwit past voters.

If – by some miracle – the amendment proposal is passed, it wouldn’t only give the Legislature the authority to legalise casino gambling in the state, but it would allow Nebraska to build casinos within 60 miles of a border state. That’s unless the border state agreed to share some of the tax revenue.

Nevertheless, lawmakers have yet to take an action on the proposal. The question is: will they ever?

 

Over in Connecticut, similar debates on the legalising and regulating of internet gambling are taking place, with the Connecticut Council on Problem Gambling urging lawmakers to be “cautious” in their decisions.

A report by TheDay states the council’s executive director, Marvin Steinberg, told the General Assembly’s Finance Committee that “the convenience and anonymity of online gambling, coupled with the absence of social cues, makes it a particularly dangerous form of gambling”.

Apparently, the agency is neither endorsing nor opposing Internet gambling, but wants legislators to understand the potential ramifications of expanding it. However, we can’t forget how Gov. Dannel Malloy expressed a view earlier this month that widespread online gambling is now inevitable in the state due to the U.S. Department of Justice’s Christmas present, adding that Connecticut should be ready. Is it ready?

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