March 9, 2021 Legal, Lottery

Senator says Alabama Lottery bill could be delayed

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Senator Jabo Waggoner says “there’s some moving parts, so it’s up in the air.”

Last week Sen. Del Marsh said he expected the Senate to debate his constitutional amendment to allow a lottery, five casinos, and sports betting in Alabama.

Yesterday, Marsh spoke with Governor Kay Ivey and leaders in the House of Representatives. But Waggoner was preparing for a backup agenda in case Marsh’s bill was not ready. Marsh did add that final details were still under negotiation.

Press secretary for Ivey, Gina Maiola, said: “We still have some work to be done. She remains engaged and in conversations with Senator Marsh.

“Ultimately, we must be able to control and regulate gambling if it is going to be legal in Alabama, and the intention is certainly not to have a casino on every corner. The Governor supports the people of Alabama having the final say.”

Even if Senate accepts the bill, it will have to pass the House and then Alabama voters will have the final say on whether they want to change the law which prohibits gambling in Alabama.

Four of the five casinos proposed by Marsh will be at the state’s greyhound tracks. The fifth would be in DeKalb Country or Jackson county and will be operated by the Poarch Band of Creek Indians.

Meanwhile, the lottery would include multi-state lottery games such as Powerball and could fund scholarships to deprived community colleges.

It is estimated the lottery could raise net revenue of $200m to $280m a year. Whereas the casinos would pay a 20% tax on gambling and could raise $260m to $390m a year.

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