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US – New Hampshire House rejects 5,000 VLT casino proposal

By - 18 March 2014

The north-eastern state of New Hampshire has again voted against introducing casino gaming to the state despite support from its Governor; Maggie Hassan.

The proposal to license one casino with up to 5,000 video slot machines and 150 table games was voted out by 173 votes to 144.

Governor Hassan, who backs legalising one casino, believes the vote will just see gambling spend go to Massachusetts, which is allowing three casinos and one slot hall to be developed.

“Despite today’s vote, I continue to believe that developing our own plan for one high-end casino is the best course of action for investing in the priorities that are critical to long-term economic growth. Soon, we all will see the impact of Massachusetts casinos right across our border in the form of lost revenue and potential social costs,’’ she said.

The New Hampshire Gaming Regulatory Oversight Authority, which was created following a similar move by the House to axe the Senate’s casino bill last year, recommended the legislation.

The plan was to tax tables at 18 per cent and slots at 35 per cent. Supporters pitched annual taxation at US$105m in annual revenue. The House did though reject a proposal by casino opponents to indefinitely postpone the option to bring casino gaming to New Hampshire. This gives the state Senate the opportunity to revive its own bill for two casinos.

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