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Amendment 3: Not As Clear-Cut As ‘Voter Control of Gambling in Florida’

| October 22, 2018

Amendment 3, placed on the ballot by a political committee largely backed by Disney Worldwide Services, Inc. and the Seminole Tribe of Florida, would give voters the “exclusive right to decide whether to authorize casino gambling” in the state.

Dog Racing Ban, On November Ballot, Gets a Boost From Doris Day

| July 30, 2018

The Doris Day Animal League made a $1.5 million contribution to the Committee to Protect Dogs, backing Amendment 13, which appears on Florida ballots this fall.

Betting On That Super Bowl: States Moving To Legalize Sports Gambling Ahead of Court

| February 4, 2018

The Supreme Court is expected to rule on a case that may open the way for states to authorize sports betting. Bills have been filed in 20 states in anticipation of the ruling.

Ballot Measure Would Give Voters, Not Legislature, Final Say On Gambling’s Legality

| January 17, 2018

The proposed constitutional amendment pits the state’s gambling industry against anti-gambling advocates in what is expected to be a high-dollar campaign before the fall election.

Game Over: Lawmakers, Not Voters, Decide Whether To Allow Slot Machines, High Court Rules

| May 20, 2017

The Florida Supreme Court squashed a broad expansion of slot machines in at least eight counties, saying the decision to allow pari-mutuels to add the lucrative games rests with the Legislature, not voters.

Gambling or Charity? Conflict Over Shut-Down of Electronic Bingo, Which Had Sustained Flagler Cats

| May 15, 2017

Shamrock Bingo in Bunnell operated for years until an inspection found its 40 electronic machines to be illegal. Lawyers for the business are disputing the finding. The city will seek a state Attorney General’s opinion.

Gambling Is For Losers: We Should Ban It in Florida

| July 31, 2014

We need a state constitutional amendment to ban all wagering in Florida, argues Stephen Goldtsein. Oddly, raising taxes is considered a cardinal sin, but gambling is supposedly a blessing — especially since the state began pimping it through the Florida Lottery.

Florida Lottery Spikes to Record $5.3 Billion in Sales; Only $1.4 Billion to Education

| July 8, 2014

The Florida Lottery’s increased revenues stems largely from continued growth in scratch-off ticket sales, which range in price from $1 to $25 and are now available at more than 13,000 locations throughout the state.

Internet Café Crackdown: Gambling Task Force Serves Search Warrants in 5 Counties as Businesses Skirt Ban

| April 3, 2014

The Legislature essentially banned such businesses last year, but some continue to operate under different guises. At one point at least seven of the gambling parlors had been operating in Palm Coast, but none in Flagler Beach or the unincorporated part of Flagler County.

Florida Lawmakers’ Bugsy Fixation

| December 3, 2013

We have become a nation of people who sue each other and serve each other hamburgers. Are we also to become a nation of croupiers and cocktail waitresses? Sadly, that seems to be the message our politicians are delivering as they bet more of Florida’s future on gambling.

Gambling’s Odds in Florida May Be Left To a Constitutional Amendment in 2014

| December 2, 2013

House Speaker Will Weatherford’s new plan–to let voters decide if they should weigh in on future expansion of gambling–could provide cover for Republican House members reluctant to expand gambling as the Legislature takes up the thorny issue during the upcoming session.

State Rakes In Cash From Seminole Casinos and Rethinks Gambling Landscape

| October 23, 2013

Under the current deal with the Seminoles, which ends in 2015, the tribe makes the payments to the state in exchange for having the exclusive right to offer banked table games, such as blackjack, along with a monopoly on all slot locations outside of Broward and Miami-Dade counties. The Seminoles agreed to pay a minimum of $150 million in each of the first two years, $233 million in the third and fourth years and $234 million in 2015.

Giant Gambling Wish List and Seminole Compact on Florida Lawmakers’ Table

| September 3, 2013

Slot machines, blackjack and roulette are back on the table as lawmakers prepare once again to tackle the high-stakes issue of gambling in a state that everyone agrees is already one of the industry’s biggest cash cows.

Florida Lottery Sets Record With $5 Billion In Sales as Gambling’s Attraction Grows

| July 10, 2013

A little more than 62 percent of the money is paid out to winners, while $1.41 billion will go to the Educational Enhancement Trust Fund, though that hasn’t kept local school boards’ budgets from being cut. The voter-approved Lottery grew from $1.8 billion in sales in 1989, its first full year.

As Florida Bans Internet Cafés, Palm Coast’s Lingering Joints Place Last Bets on Eulogies

| April 5, 2013

A FlaglerLive reporter, $50 in hand, made a tour of Palm Coast’s Internet cafes, only to find most of them closed already, and a mournful atmosphere at two that were open, not long before a bill banning the small gambling halls was sent to Gov. Rick Scott Thursday.

Les Jeux Sont Faits: Gov. Scott Will Sign Internet Cafe Ban

| April 4, 2013

Gov. Rick Scott will sign legislation prohibiting the gaming at Internet cafés, his office said Thursday, following the Senate’s Senate’s 36-4 passage of a bill that flew through the Legislature spurred by an on-going racketeering investigation, and pushed by Sen. John Thrasher, who represents Flagler County.

House Votes 108-7 to Ban Internet Cafes; Impact in Palm Coast Will be Limited

| March 22, 2013

Palm Coast at one point had nearly a dozen such businesses. Last week it had seven. This week, according to Palm Coast Mayor Jon Netts, the number was down to three, as several of them closed pre-emptively.

Tightening Vise on Internet Cafes, Senate Panel Follows House to Ban Them in Florida

| March 18, 2013

The vote moves the Senate closer to outlawing the cafes and arcades, a proposal that was approved by the House last year but never reached the Senate floor. The proposal drew concerns about the potential impact on other amusement games used by charities and amusement arcades.

Week in Review: Busting Out from Carroll to Cafes

| March 16, 2013

Carroll’s political career appears all but finished. Making matters worse for the former Navy lieutenant commander, she will be remembered for her involvement with Allied Veterans of the World, a group that authorities say held itself out as a charity for veterans but actually was a gambling operation that enriched a handful of people.

Internet Cafe Ban Picks Up Steam as House Committee Closes In on “Skills” Loophole

| March 15, 2013

The new law would end a gray area in state statutes used by operators of Internet cafes that the games are contests of skill and that the contests are similar to regulated sweepstakes offerings by places like McDonalds, Coca Cola, Chucky Cheese and churches.

Sen. Thrasher Calls for Outright Shut-Down Of Internet Cafes in Wake of Scandal

| March 13, 2013

Sen. John Thrasher, an influential senator who represents Flagler County, and who has sought to place a moratorium on new Internet cafes, said Wednesday that criminal allegations of racketeering and other wrongdoing in the industry should spur lawmakers to close the storefront businesses.

Lt. Gov. Carroll Resigns as Internet Cafe Scandal Sweeps Florida–and Palm Coast

| March 13, 2013

As Flagler County Sheriff’s deputies were serving a search warrant on the Internet Cafe in the Home Depot shopping center, Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll was resigning in connection with the scandal, which has led to Allied officials’ arrests.

Answering Palm Coast, Thrasher Will Pitch Internet Cafe Bill, But Reach May Be Limited

| February 19, 2013

Palm Coast officials want state lawmakers to either ban or more strictly regulate and possibly tax gambling parlor-like internet cafes. Sen. John Thrasher is proposing a moratorium on the parlors, which may not match local demands, as a moratorium was already executed in Palm Coast.

“Non-Profit” Internet Cafe’s New Stand: Hands Off Our Financial Records

| May 7, 2012

Affiliates of the non-profit Allied Veterans of the World contend in a lawsuit they are not covered by state charity laws that would require them to register with the department and provide financial information.

Florida’s Casino Bill “Dead for This Year”

| February 4, 2012

A controversial bill to allow mega-resort casinos in Florida appears dead this year, after the House sponsor scrapped a vote Friday by a subcommittee that likely would have rejected the idea.

Don’t Ban Internet Cafés. Regulate Them.

| January 23, 2012

Internet cafés may be a pest, and their proponents make laughable arguments when they claim they’re not about gambling. But it’s not government’s business to ban them while swinging from the lottery’s levers. Regulation is the key.

Bill To Ban Internet Cafes Advances in Florida Legislature as Opponents Call It a Job Killer

| January 17, 2012

A House panel Today approved a proposal to shutter the 1,000-some Internet cafés that have opened in shopping centers across the state in recent years, including nearly a dozen in Palm Coast.

Senate Sweep: More Slots, Lower Gambling Taxes, Only Minor Internet Cafe Regulations

| January 7, 2012

A Senate committee Monday considers a sweeping proposal that would allow three mega-casinos in Florida, offer more slots at pari-mutuel facilities and rein in Internet cafes a little.

As Florida Eyes Resort Casinos As Cash Cows, Economists Warn Against Too High a Bet

| December 11, 2011

Faced with a series of unanswered questions, economists say they cannot not pinpoint how much money the state would rake in if Florida lawmakers approve a plan for three resort casinos.

Court Hearing Arguments in a Case That May Determine Legality of Sweepstakes Gambling

| November 15, 2011

Allied Veterans is asking the 1st District Court of Appeal to let the lawsuit move forward, as the non-profit organization seeks a declaration that it offers legal sweepstakes games at the cafes — and not illegal gambling, as critics allege.

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