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Delaware Prepares Cuts to Casino Taxes, Florida Pulls Plug on Gambling Bill

- March 14, 2018 By Oliver Young -

Online gambling can be beneficial for traditional operators, it has been claimed.

US state legislators have been busy these days and presented both good and bad news to players.

Half of the week hasn’t passed yet and the gambling sector in the United States have witnessed a few important changes. Namely, it has been reported that Delaware legislators have been working on a bill that could cut the casino taxes operators have to pay. Meanwhile, Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board is, reportedly, drafting temporary online gambling regulations.

In less positive news, the Florida gambling bill that was supposed to help gambling expand in the state has been shut down. As Joe Negron, Senate President, and Richard Corcoran, House Speaker, put it in a joint statement, despite the good faith and efforts of the Senate and the House, the gambling bill “will not pass the Legislature this season.”

These latest events show that Florida still remains quite unopen to the expansion of gambling within its territory. On the other hand, it reveals Delaware authorities’ openness to creating a fair and safe gambling market for both operators and consumers. Plus, Pennsylvania promises to finally start its online gambling market, which has been legalized five months ago.

Delaware Casino Tax Cuts Would Mean Less Money for the State

Naturally, the bill that introduces cuts in casino taxes would mean less money for the state and therefore it is not guaranteed it will be passed. According to current gambling laws, US casino operators pay 43% taxes on slot machine generated revenue and 30% taxes on table game revenue; moreover, they pay an annual licensing fee of $3 million.

The changes are calling for tiered tax between 32% and 43.5% on slot machine revenue and much lower 15% taxes on revenue from table games. Plus, it calls for the annual fee to be completely removed. In other words, if the bill is passed Delaware could lose up to $20 million per year; thus, Governor John Carney is one of its main opponents. Operators, on the other hand, say that such changes would help them stay afloat and beat competition from neighbouring states.

Gambling Remains a Difficult Issue in Florida

Even though Florida’s Senate decided to weaken its stance towards gambling and approve a broad gambling measure, which would have resulted in slot machines in racing tracks as well as fantasy sports operations, legislators have shown little enthusiasm regarding the issue. As a result, Florida’s latest gambling bill has been shut down, according to insider information. It has been reported that the two legislative chambers failed to come to agreement regarding the bill and therefore the one-month old proposal is probably forever done.

Luckily for Pennsylvania gamblers, their legislators seem much more open and understanding. Thus, after a five-month status quo, lawmakers have started drafting temporary regulations in order to start online gambling operations in the state. It has been revealed that the PGCB has come up with a unique licensing process that includes one main online gambling license as well as individual product class licenses. Single product license would cost soaring $4 million, while getting the main 3-product licence comes with a discount at $10 million.

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