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US – Local referendum could be used to bring in four new casinos in North Carolina

By - 21 July 2023

North Carolina could get four new casinos with on-going discussions by legislators and General Assembly leaders although they will need formal legislation and a vote. 

North Carolina currently has three casinos run by the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians or Catawba Indian nation, but state officials are concerned that tax revenue is being lost to other states with casinos opening in Virginia. The proposals would see casinos opening in ‘entertainment districts’ in Anson, Nash and Rockingham counties. 

Senate leader Phil Berger said: “I would anticipate that if at the point in time when we get a budget done, we will have made a decision about (gambling) as well. It’s something that I’ve been supportive of in concept. Gaming is already taking place in North Carolina, and gaming is taking place on the border of North Carolina that is pulling money out of North Carolina. A new revenue stream has multiple benefits.” 

House Speaker Tim Moore added: “The response that we’re hearing from legislators from those regions has been supportive because they see it as a way to really spur the economy of their region. It’s unclear whether the final product would require formal backing of a casino project by local voters, such as through a referendum. There’s a decent amount of support for it in the caucus, both for the entertainment district as well as the VLTs. My understanding is that there is more support for this proposal than there was for some of the sports betting. It’s a way to really spur the economy of the region.” 

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