Gambling Legislation

Alabama ready to revive gambling legislation

Alabama ready to revive gambling legislation

Several legislators have confirmed that they’re preparing new gambling bills for the 2024 session

Alabama lawmakers could be weighing gambling legislation after Democratic party members discussed taking up the issue in the next legislative session at the party’s annual Pro-Growth Policy Conference. Officials have drafted a proposal to bring in industry experts from other states to discover how expanding gaming could benefit tax revenue.

“We’re going to talk about proceed revenue sharing, folks from Tennessee, folks from Georgia, vendors that deal with the lottery, so that our members will be able to get a full picture,” said House Minority Leader Anthony Daniels (D) to WSFA-12.

Alabama has three Wind Creek casinos in Atmore, Montgomery and Wetumpka, operated by the Poarch Band of Creek Indians. There’s also the Victoryland Casino in Shorter with electronic bingo and simulcast greyhound and thoroughbred race betting. Several bingo halls are also operating in the state.

Alabama is also one of five states with no lottery and has no traditional commercial casinos or poker rooms. Sports betting is also illegal there.

The plan outlined by Democrats includes casino and sports betting proposals. But it may be a difficult task after state lawmakers couldn’t reach an agreement on a state lottery in the recent legislative session.

Sports betting and casinos are offered in several states near Alabama, including Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee and Louisiana. Tennessee also offers sports betting, and all bordering states have lotteries.

It will be interesting to see what happens in March at the next Alabama legislative session, with the House and Senate both having substantial Republican majorities. But a bipartisan agreement could be made on the issue at some point as they look for ways to keep gaming revenue in the state.

Republican Governor Kay Ivey has been open to the idea of expanded gaming, with others in the party also expressing support.

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