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Georgia Could Introduce Casinos, Racetracks
- September 16, 2015 By Nemanja L. -
Georgia could soon become the next US state to allow casinos and racetracks as the new gambling legislation has finally been set in motion, with money earned from licensing fees and taxes going towards the HOPE (Helping Outstanding Pupils Educationally) scholarship programs.
The state lawmakers discussed the gaming legislation on Monday and they will meet again before December 1 to make their final recommendations on the matter.
Largest Metropolitan Area Without A Casino
Atlanta remains one of the largest markets in the United States that does not allow casino gambling at the moment, with state legislature turning down all efforts to introduce a new casino bill.
State Representative Ron Stephens is the latest politician to make an attempt to lift the ban on casino gambling, having introduce a bill back in March.
Stephens aims to remove the state’s ban on casino gaming, while at the same time limit the number of gaming establishments to six, which would be located in five specific geographic areas.
Under the terms of the new legislation, gaming companies would be charged millions of dollars on account of licensing fees, whereas they would also have to pay 12 percent tax on gross gaming revenue each year.
The sole purpose of the legal framework would be to help Georgia’s educational system, seeing that 90 percent of all earnings made from gaming operators would need to be invested in HOPE and other similar programs.
MGM to Build $1 Billion Resort & Casino
MGM were one of the first world-famous operators to express their interest in building a resort and casino in Atlanta, with $1 billion project that could generate up to 5,000 permanent job being pondered.
The presence of Georgia World Congress Center and Harsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport would also help attract major casino operators.
Dean Reeves, president of Georgia Horseracing Coalition, believes that Atlanta should no longer remain the largest metropolitan area in the United States without a Racetrack and he believes the new legislation will make things right and pave the way for the first Atlanta Racetrack to be built.
And it is the problems with HOPE funding that could eventually persuade state legislators to finally allow casino gaming in Georgia, considering that lottery earnings did not prove sufficient to keep the program running as it should.