For several years now, Senator Lou D.Allesandro has tried to see the state of New Hampshire legalize casinos. The state is one of only a few in the US that does not allow casino gaming. A recent attempt has failed as well, making this a staggering eleven times that the senator has tried. The senator thought this year might be his year since sports betting was booming across the nation. However, that was not the case.
Sports Betting Yes; Casinos No
The House passed H 480 this year, with an overwhelming vote in favor of sports betting. D.Allesandro thought that by creating casino legislation that would allow the venues to offer sports betting, it might sweeten the pot. However, last week, the House Committee on Ways and Means reviewed the legislation, S 310, and the outcome was not what the senator had hoped for.
According to Chairman of the Committee, Susan Almy, it is clear that online casinos are not coming to the state. She spoke to sources, stating that none of the casino companies want it and that House remains generally opposed to expanding with slot machine gaming.
There were those in attendance who are in favor of casinos in the state. However, there was not a single person from the casino industry in the meeting to show their support. According to Almy, there is no interest because the market in New England is already saturated.
Sports Betting Moving On
Despite casinos no longer under consideration, the state is moving forward with sports betting legislation. If it were to come to pass, it will most likely be H 480 that does the trick. The bill will be heard within the Senate Committee on Ways and means this week and D’Allesandro is the vice chair of the committee.
According to lawmakers, the governor is in favor of sports betting and so is the House. The Senate is also more open to other gambling options instead of like in previous years when they were opposed. Representative Richard Ames plans on attending the sports betting hearing and showing his support. he is also the vice chair of the committee.
However, there is a belief among lawmakers that the senate will not allow the sports betting measure to move forward without allowing for a casino expansion. The upcoming hearing should be some indication as to how well the bill will received.
It could be that New Hampshire lawmakers reach a stalemate, with neither the House or the Senate agreeing to budge. If that is the case, then the state will miss out on both options, which will only mean revenues will go to other states that offer such gambling services.
We will stay tuned to the progress of the legislation this week and the weeks to come, reporting any updates at they are made available. This is just one of many states to watch when it comes to an expansion of the gambling industry, be it with sports betting or casino gaming.