With regulated online gambling in New Jersey, Nevada, and Delaware – and with scores of Americans in other states anteing up online at countless other internationally renowned casinos like Slots of Vegas – a few other states are starting to look to online gambling to generate revenue.
If you’re not familiar with the casino scene, you might assume that land-based casino gambling is the norm across the country, but online gambling tends to be the contentious issue… You’d be wrong.
Hawaii doesn’t have any form of gambling. No lottery. No charitable games. Nothing. The same goes for Utah. Alaska has tribal casinos, but they don’t offer a lottery, nor do they offer commercial casinos.
And they’re not alone. Only 20 states and two US territories allow commercial gambling, including Colorado, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, South Dakota, U.S. Virgin Islands, Washington, and West Virginia.
But to the east of that last state we mentioned, it’s a different story. In Virginia, gambling isn’t legalized. But that doesn’t mean residents don’t gamble. Instead, they’re taking their money out of state and spending it at places where it’s legalized.
That’s causing people in Virginia to re-look at casino gambling and the merits of legalizing it. And there are lots of advantages to doing so.
According to a recent news report out of Pennsylvania, where casinos are legal, almost $800 million went to line the pockets of citizens. That’s right, residents benefit from an average of $200 in property tax savings. And seniors got rebates of just shy of $1,000.
Getting a state on board with legal casino gambling isn’t easy. There’s always a resistance, as is happening in Massachusetts where there’s a question on the ballot to repeal a casino expansion act.
But with online gambling now capturing the attention of players across the country, it would be foolish for states to get even further behind. Now is the time to legalize land-based gambling or risk losing even more revenue down the road.