Voters in Florida Set to Decide Gambling Changes This Week

This week, the November midterm elections will see voters in Florida deciding if they will be the deciding factor when it comes to gambling decisions in the state or if lawmakers will remain in charge. An amendment is under consideration that could give the people of the state the exclusive right to decide if casino gambling would be allowed Florida.

The gambling market in the state already brought in over $546 million in 2017 from racinos alone. Aside from tribal gaming, the state only offers jai alai, dog tracks and harness racing, which do not offer traditional casino gaming.

Voters are considering Amendment 3, which is titled the Voter Approval of Casino Gambling Initiative. The power to decide if casino gambling would be allowed in the state would remain in the politician’s hands or if the residents will have the say so.

Currently, an expansion of gambling can only be completed by the legislators of the state. The measure is currently being pushed by Disney as well as the Seminole Tribe of Florida. Tens of millions have been spent to push the amendment in the hopes that voters will approve it. Disney would like to hold on to their tourism dollars instead of seeing visitors of the state go to casinos. The Seminoles want to maintain their monopoly within the gambling industry and be the only ones to have exclusive rights to offer blackjack as well as other games.

Those who are opposed to the amendment feel that the change would make it much more difficult to see expansion of casino gaming in the state. At minimum, 60% of residents would have to vote in favor of any changes before new options could be approved. Those who are opposed do not want to see the Seminoles have a monopoly when it comes to casino gaming.

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