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Legislators predict this is the year for 'casino' lightning in Florida

The sponsor of the bill to bring resort casinos to South Florida believes that the arrival of gambling giant Genting, the state’s dismal economy and a rush of casino cash give legislators a chance to catch “lightning in a bottle” and pass the long-sought legislation this year.

“There is an appetite now to catch these destination resorts and potentially inject $5 billion to $6 billion into the local economy – and that trickles up to the state,’’ said Rep. Erik Fresen, R-Miami. “If we weren’t in double-digit unemployment and a receding economy, I don’t think there would be much appetite for this bill but, in this environment, it’s almost an obligation to discuss it.”

In the next two weeks, Fresen and Sen. Ellyn Bogdanoff, R-Fort Lauderdale, will unveil their proposed legislation to allow Genting Malaysia Berhad and its competitors to bid on three licenses to bring resort-style casinos to South Florida.

The proposals will also consolidate the regulation of the existing gambling industry under a single gaming commission and regulate or outlaw so-called internet cafes that have exploited a loophole in state law to open storefront casinos, the legislators said.

“This is the year it can happen,’’ said Bogdanoff, who has opposed expanded gambling most of her legislative career. She believes “the time has come” for the state to pave the way for private sector competition to the Seminole Tribe, which now has a monopoly on casino games in Florida. To bring casinos to Florida, lawmakers must pass a bill and the governor must sign it. More here.


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col. kurtz

Casinos? where are Rivera and Rubio? does Rivera have an going relationship with the casino industry? our people are hearing that he does.


They wouldn't even remove the greyhound racing requirements last year because it would lead to expanded gambling. Wouldn't this require a constitutional amendment?


They're gambling away their money away in "internet cafes", which are nothing but slot machines on computers. I went into one a couple months back thinking it was actually an INTERNET CAFE, & it was like the Matrix in there. Nothing but old people buying a ticket from the counter and playing computer slots. They're everywhere. Just build a casino and let them go to town.


Besides, what could go wrong with private casino owners? *cough JACK ABRAMOFF/SUNCRUZ CASINO MURDER cough*

Florida Lottery

So does it mean that it is the end of good old gambling times? So now everyone will start playing on-line?


WARNING: You are going to get a really BIG surprise if Miami or South Florida gets those BIG casinos in the Destination Resort Bill.

I was actually in both Las Vegas and Atlantic City, NJ working for the casinos during the 1970's when the Las Vegas casino executives and the New Jersey politicians & New Jersey gaming commission made a lot of BIG "promises" to the people in New Jersey and Atlantic City about improving their economy and housing.

Guess what ? There is still high unemployment and slums in Atlantic City today ( 35+ years later ) while those million dollar casinos are making a lot of money. Please do not make the same mistake in Miami or South Florida !

Please contact all your public government officials and tell them to vote NO against these BIG casinos !



Thank you !!

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