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Online Casino News - July, 2008

Land-based Casino Gambling News Update for North America



  Seed Newsvine

by Devon Chappell, News Staff Writer

July 6, 2008

From the most notable, recent headlines in the brick 'n mortar casino gambling world, things are not looking so good for Vegas-style Class III casino gambling in Florida, while in Canada, sports betting could get just the boost it needs to the tune of $3 billion per year. The happenings from both sides of the continent still need some time to be played out before the full repercussions can be weighed.

In Florida, you might recall the U.S. Department of Interior approving a deal between the Seminole Indian tribe and Florida Governor, Charlie Crist, to bring Class III casino gambling to the Seminole's seven tribal casinos throughout the State for the next 25 years - consequently requiring the tribes to pay gambling taxes to Florida for the first time (expected to generate $100 million in taxes per year).

But with some wrangling from Florida House Speaker Marco Rubio, who said Crist's compact was in violation of the State Constitution's clause on separation of powers (noting that five other State Supreme Courts have ruled a governor cannot unilaterally bind a state in a gambling compact), as well as some harping from South Florida racino operators, the Florida Supreme Court has overturned Crist's compact with the Seminole's.

The issue now at hand is whether or not the Seminole tribe should cease its Class III casino operations, which are already in full effect. To further complicate the matter, the Seminoles have already paid $50 million to the State of Florida as part of the compact. So as of now - post Supreme Court ruling - the tribe is still taking Las Vegas bets at its casinos. If a governor cannot unilaterally bind the state into a gambling compact, then who can? Perhaps that is the next course of action?

In Canada, things are looking more promising. If Joe Comartin gets his way and is able to amend the federal Criminal Code to allow betting on individual sporting events, as much $3 billion in gross wagering per year could be generated in Canada. As things stand now, bettors are only permitted to make parlay bets, which are combination bets made on the outcome of three or more sporting events at a single time. More tempting, however, would be the allowance of betting on single sporting events. And Comartin's proposal is tempting indeed, for Canadians love their sports. Hockey, baseball, soccer, basketball and football would all be fair game bets at casinos and race tracks if the amendment is passed.



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