The governor of Virginia has proposed a study that would look at how the state should move forward with gambling plans. While on its face, this appears like a promising deal, in reality, numerous pro-gambling legislators see it as a stalling tactic in a state that’s notoriously behind its neighbor states with regard to gambling.
Virginia has historically been opposed to gambling. While horse racing has been in the state since colonial times, the state was not gambling friendly. A number of various casino projects have began and after that been shuttered. So far, the only type of gambling which has had a role in Virginia’s economy has been racetracks.
However, the move towards adding extra gambling has been on the horizon, especially in New Kent County, which is a rural area east of Richmond. The county is one of the quickest growing counties in the state. Colonial Downs, a defunct racetrack within the county, is scheduled to reopen in 2019. Whilst the General Assembly voted to permit horse racing expansion and off-track betting, the owners of Colonial Downs are searching for more. The new owners of the racetrack are pushing the government to allow it to possess slot machines in the track.
There’s also going to become new federally legislated gambling that the state of Virginia can’t touch. The Pamunkey Indian Tribe has produced plans to open a $700 million casino resort, possibly within the fast-growing New Kent colony.
Additionally to the increased pressure from racetracks to turn into racinos, the state can also be facing the pressure from Virginians to increase the revenue flowing into the state. This is particularly accurate within the locations close to Maryland, Washington, D.C., Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. All of those locations have casino gambling. Pennsylvania and West Virginia have sports gambling, and Pennsylvania has online gaming as well. The MGM National Harbor in Maryland just outdoors Washington, D.C. has made enormous amounts of money because its grand opening. All told, these casino states, which are surrounding Virginia, implies that there are a huge selection of millions of dollars within the coffers of other states that should be going into Virginia.
Initially, the governor seemed all in favor of allowing the debate about gambling to happen within the General Assembly. He has stated that he is not going to rule out the casinos. The Speaker of the Home, Kirk Cox, has said that he doesn’t want casinos in his state. The governor, whilst initially said that he would not be opposed to gambling, has now stated that he wants to do a study to determine exactly where and when additional gambling ought to happen. Whilst some members from the General Assembly are in favor from the study, many individuals are opposed.
This is largely because the study proposed by the governor will take a lengthy time to total, and price a lot of cash to begin. The study, that is anticipated to cost almost $200,000, will be conducted throughout 2019, and also the final outcomes are not expected until November of 2019. If this dateline holds, the results from the study will not be accessible until the finish of the year, and also the Common Assembly will have to wait an additional year to create decisions on gambling.
This is about a year too lengthy for many business owners, who want some thing to happen this year, as do legislators. They think that every year they don’t get gambling in the state is a year they’re losing revenue to neighboring states. It will likely be fascinating to determine how the battle in between the governor’s new strategy and the legislator’s desires indicates there will be a compromise.