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Column: Expansion of gaming in Florida hinges on 2014 election


Filed Under: Compacts | Opinion
More on: 2014, democrats, elections, florida, republicans, seminole
   
Sunshine State News columnist Nancy Smith predicts Florida lawmakers will move to expand non-Indian gaming if Democrat Charlie Crist defeats Gov. Rick Scott (R) in the November election:
I don't need a crystal ball to predict that if Charlie Crist wins, and Scott can complete a new compact with the Seminole Tribe by November, lawmakers will return for a special session on gaming, to finish what they started this year -- legalize two Las Vegas-style casinos in South Florida -- add a referendum element maybe -- reform greyhound tracks to report animal injuries and discourage live races, and create a five-member Gaming Control Board appointed by the governor.

No way are they going to wait until after a Charlie Crist inauguration and involve the new Democrat in any of it.

Now, if Rick Scott wins, cancel the above. Scott has read the gospel that national gaming consultant Steve Norton preaches, that new jobs, taxes, construction and tourism are at stake. Norton talks and Scott listens: Destination casinos would be a great addition for a number of Florida resort communities that have thousands of existing accomodations, a good airport and a large site adjacent to the interstate highway system.

Charlie might like all that or he might not. He's not a governor who put his foot down on much of anything.

So, there you are. Charlie wins ... gambling special session. You heard it here first.

Get the Story:
Nancy Smith: What Happens to Gambling If Charlie Crist Wins? (Sunshine State News 4/11)

Also Today:
Fla. GOP rakes in money from major companies (AP 4/11)

Related Stories:
Column: Politicians moving slow on non-Indian gaming in Florida (4/7)
Lawmakers drop efforts to expand non-Indian gaming in Florida (4/4)

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