The Florida Lottery was a program that was started nearly twenty years ago to help the state’s education system financially. Over the years millions of dollar has come into the education system from the lottery.
After almost twenty years of being the only ticket in town, change could be on the horizon for the state lottery. Expanded gambling in the state’s casinos could mean a drop in business for the lottery.
Broward County has gone to Vegas style slot machines in their parimutuels. The Indian casinos have just received permission to install the Vegas style slots throughout their state casinos. They also will be allowed to offer blackjack and baccarat.
Miami Dade voters have just voted for the Vegas style slots in their County. All of these expanded gambling options could have a negative effect on old reliable, the state lottery.
No data currently backs up the theory of lottery sales dropping in Broward since the added gambling in the casinos. With Miami Dade adding the slot machines, and with the Seminole expansion, however, there is the possibility of lottery sales declining.
The economy is getting tighter in the state, much like around the nation. People will soon, if not already, be having to make decisions on where to spend their precious few extra entertainment dollars. That is where the drop off for the lottery could occur.
The lottery has survived several difficult economic periods. It has the resolve and the draw that could withstand the influx of competition. Only time will tell if the expanded gambling will hurt what is now a state institution, the lottery.
Exceptions Sought For Casinos, Bars, Under New Smoking Laws in Illinois
Illinois is just doing what many state before them have already done. They have put laws in place that call for a smoking ban in all indoor public places.
The ban is causing business to drop in many establishments. Bar and casino owners are looking for some relief to the new laws that have only been in place for a little over a month.
The two groups, along with veterans’ organizations are expected to ask lawmakers to ratify the laws to allow for smoking exceptions in some areas. The state General Assembly will be back in Springfield this week and the new law will be one of interest at the meetings.
The whiplash effect is one that is common when these new smoking laws go into affect. “It’s February 8th. It went into effect January 1st. Give it a chance. We’ve only gone thirty some days. I’m not willing to talk about any exceptions until we give it a chance,” said one of the creators of the new ban, Senator Terry Link.
The casino industry, which figured to be one of the industries that would be hit hardest by the smoking ban, claims that they have already seen a decrease of seventeen percent in their business this year.
The drop in business could have as much to do with the struggling economy as with the smoking ban. That is why Senator Link has taken his wait and see approach before revisiting the issue.