North Carolina making legislative effort to authorize three commercial casinos
North Carolina Senate President Pro Tempore Phil Berger, a Republican from Rockingham, recently filed a draft bill that seeks to end the state’s long-standing ban on Las Vegas-style commercial casinos.
The Tar Heel State is presently home to only three tribal casinos. For the time being, no commercial casino exists in the state. The three tribal casinos active in the state are: Catawba Two Kings Casino, Harrah’s Cherokee, and Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino.
However, the scenario can change as the aforementioned legislative effort is underway to permit Las Vegas-style commercial casino resorts is officially underway in the Raleigh capital. Rockingham County of the state, which is located just south of the Virginia border, is one of three counties that is included in legislation for approval of commercial casino gambling.
Obviously, the path ahead will not be easy to tackle as a significant of local residents have already started opposing a Las Vegas-style gambling friendly property in their area.
On the other hand, Senate President Pro Berger and several other Republicans claim that expanding gambling in the state to permit commercial casino operations would be of a great help because it would generate thousands of new jobs for people as well as a new stream of tax revenue for the government. Each of the three casinos would need to employ a minimum of 1,750 people, while gross gaming revenue (GGR) would be taxed at a rate of 22.5 per cent. Proponents of the legislative efforts also say that the recent expansion of gambling in the neighbouring state of Virginia provides adequate ground for such legislative discussion in Raleigh.
It is also worth-noting here that the legislation wouldn’t require local referendums. It means voters living in the area would have no say on a proposed gaming property in the area casino. However, county commissioners would be provided with a chance to have the final vote on the casino. Berger claims that county commissioners are already in support of a casino.
Speaking on the topic, Berger said, “The report back to me is that they support it. It wouldn’t be just a standalone casino. The idea would be a casino, hotel, possibly residential, commercial, and office-industrial space.”
Apart from Rockingham, Anson and Nash rural counties are included in legislation for approval of Las Vegas-style commercial casino gambling. All of these three counties have long been experiencing higher rates of poverty than the state’s average. Moreover, each of the three counties has less than 100,000 residents.