Ron DeSantis Approves New Gambling Rules in Florida

Governor DeSantis

Florida is known for having a fairly strict set of gambling regulations. For years, certain officials here have been pushing to change these regulations. It seems that some progress is being made. Reports have confirmed that Governor Ron DeSantis has approved new gambling rules in Florida.

Many are excited to see these new measures passed. Of course, it will take time for anything to really change here. Now is a great time to look at what new gambling options could soon become available in the state.

Let’s get into it!

More States Report Increases in Gambling Revenue

The United States is beginning to see some major improvements in regards to the Covid-19 crisis. Over the past few months, infection rates have begun to drop around the country. Hospitalizations are down and vaccine distribution continues to ramp up.

As this situation improves, states are seeing their economies ramping back up. Travel has begun to increase around the country. Many businesses that rely on tourism are seeing their revenue figures increase.

That is certainly the case with casinos around the country. For months last year, the country’s entire land-based gambling industry was shut down. Things began to reopen over the summer, yet gaming revenue has remained extremely low for almost a year.

Casinos have begun to report major increases in their revenue numbers. Over in Las Vegas, tourism numbers are surging and casino-resorts are seeing huge jumps in their visitation rates. This is expected to increase further after the casinos here will be able to operate at 100% capacity in June.

Many states have recently begun to expand their gambling options. The massive amount of revenue being earned from this industry is becoming too attractive to pass on. It’s an exciting time for gambling fans around the country.

There has been a serious push to update Florida’s gambling regulation in recent years. Here’s what you need to know about this situation.

Gov. DeSantis Approves New Gambling Rules in Florida

Florida is one of the most populated states in the country. Many lawmakers and residents here have been pushing to expand the state’s gambling regulations for years. It hasn’t been easy due to the major pushback by the more conservative officials here.

Things have begun to change recently. A growing number of leaders in the state have been in negotiations with the Seminole Tribe on ways to expand gambling options in the state. At the moment, this tribe controls much of Florida’s gambling operations.

A major breakthrough was achieved this week. News has confirmed that Ron DeSantis has approved new gambling rules in Florida. If all goes according to plan, this could help to bring legalized sports betting to the state. First, it will need to be approved by the state legislature.

The new measures would allow both online and land-based sports betting in Florida. A 21 year age requirement would be set for sports betting here. The plan from DeSantis would also expand the number of casino options that the Seminole Tribe could offer.

Not everyone is on board with this idea. John Sowinski, a prominent anti-gambling voice in the state, spoke to the media and claims the decision to make new gambling rules in Florida should come down to a public vote.

“We call on the governor and our legislators to honor the will of the people, who demanded that any new casino gambling authorization occur at the ballot box, not behind closed doors in Tallahassee,” he said. “We are committed to defending the integrity of Florida’s Constitution, and ensuring that the will of the people is respected.”

Several steps are still needed to make changes here. Stay tuned for updates over the next few months!

Sports Betting Continues to Grow More Popular

Compared to most other countries, the United States’ sports betting industry is still in its infancy. It wasn’t until 2018 that any state other than Nevada was allowed to legally offer sports gambling options. With PASPA now gone, more than half the country has already approved sports gambling legislation.

This form of gambling is growing more popular every single year. As a result, states are seeing massive revenue figures coming in. Some, of course, are seeing more money from this industry coming in than others.

February ended up being a fairly unsuccessful month for the country’s sports betting industry. A large number of winning Super Bowl wagers led to handle decreases for many states. Things bounced back in a big way in March.

Several states posted large increases in sports betting revenue last month. Most analysts expect to see the same in April. It’s an exciting time for the industry and proves that the US is now home to the biggest sports betting market in the world.

It may not be long before states like California and Texas legalize sports gambling. Lawmakers in both of these states have been working with other state leaders on the issue. Even Florida seems close to getting its sports betting industry operational.

Are you excited to hear about the new gambling rules in Florida being approved? Do you think sports betting will become available here in 2021? Let us know in the comments section below!

Florida’s Guitar Hotel is Already Making Headlines

The Seminole Tribe in Florida has finally opened its most ambitious project to date. Florida’s guitar hotel is up and running and is already making headlines around the country. Now is the perfect time to look at what this massive venue has to offer.

Hard Rock Hotel Hollywood

There’s a lot happening with Hard Rock International right now. Today, we’ll also talk about some of the Seminole Tribe’s other projects. Let’s get into it!

The Casino Industry in Florida is Expanding

Florida’s gambling industry can be traced back to the early 1800s. At that time, many gambling venues were spread around the state. Lawmakers did little to regulate these establishments. In the 1940s, the state government began cracking down on different forms of gambling.

This state is home to several major tribes, many of whom were eager to crack into the gambling industry. In 1979, the Seminole Tribe opened their first bingo hall in the state. In 1988, the Supreme Court passed the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, allowing every state to open full-scale casinos. By 2004, the Seminole’s operated several major casinos here.

Back in 2006, the Seminole Tribe purchased Hard Rock International for $965 million.

In 2010, Florida passed a bill to allow full poker gambling. This also helped to boost the state’s gambling industry. Today, there are a huge number of casinos in Florida, many of which are operated by the Seminoles.

Construction began on Florida’s guitar hotel more than a year ago. In July, the tribe announced it was looking for 600 additional workers for this hotel-casino. This week, the incredible new venue officially opened to the public.

Florida’s Guitar Hotel is Now Open

The Seminole Tribe is no stranger to opening massive hotel-casinos. Years ago, they announced plans for an incredible $1.5 billion hotel expansion plans in Hollywood, Florida. Now, this venue is officially open for business.

Florida’s guitar hotel is the biggest ever constructed by Hard Rock International. It’s in the shape as a giant electric guitar and features more than 600 rooms for guests. The casino holds more than 3,000 slot machines and a massive entertainment area.

Marcellus Osceola, council chairman of the Seminole Tribe, commented on the opening of this new hotel-casino to the media this week.

“We’re very thankful and we’re blessed to be in a position that we can provide the general welfare and the help and assistance that tribe members need,” he said. “The dollars that we make here will make life a little bit easier for our members when they have health care issues or when they are trying to buy a car to transport themselves with their families.”

This is expected to become one of the biggest and most popular gambling venues in the United States.

The Seminole Tribe currently pays the state around $350 million every year. With this new venue now opened, this figure is likely to increase.

Hard Rock International Considers Move to Las Vegas

Hard Rock International owns and operates many casinos around the country. Interestingly, it’s never run a gambling venue in Las Vegas. The Hard Rock Las Vegas Hotel & Casino, which was recently sold to Virgin Hotels, was owned and operated independently by a separate company.

One of the company’s top officials recently claimed he was interested in making the move into Las Vegas. Jim Allen, chairman of Hard Rock International, says he’s been considering this move for the past several months.

The company is still working on breaking into Japan, as well. Only three casino licenses will be handed out in this country. Many analysts believe that opening a casino-resort in Las Vegas would help Hard Rock stand out and could help their chances to receive one of these licenses.

We’ll need to wait and see whether or not Hard Rock officially makes the move into Las Vegas. Several companies are currently interested in selling properties on the Las Vegas Strip. Perhaps Hard Rock will decide to purchase one of these venues.

Florida’s guitar hotel is now open. If you’re in the Hollywood area, make sure to give it a visit!

Stay tuned for more Florida casino news over the next few months!

New Florida Gambling Deal Encounters Several Issues

The state of Florida and the Seminole tribe are actively taking part in negotiations over what has been a couple of years of disagreement. The Sunshine State and the Native American tribe—which is one of the most successful organizations in the casino industry—have been on the opposing sides when it comes to the tribe’s casinos. Governor Ron DeSantis decided to be a mediator between the two warring sides who are required to make a new gambling deal and sort things out.

The legislative session between Florida and the Seminoles has a deadline, and it should be in two weeks, but the two sides have encountered a couple of issues regarding sports betting and table games that may become an obstacle to reaching an agreement. DeSantis expressed his skepticism as well, as he stated that he did not like some of the provisions made in the deal. He added that he would like to ‘get a deal’ as soon as possible, but that he would like to do everything that was right for Florida.

It has been several years now since the state and the officials of the tribe started arguing and failing to sign a new gambling-related contract. The first agreement between the two sides was reached back in 2010 but all the key terms were set to last five years. In other words, the key terms expired in 2015 when the revenue to the state was put in danger.

The former Governor of Florida, Rick Scott, had a temporary solution at hand. The two sides reached a temporary agreement that allowed the tribe to hold exclusive rights on blackjack in exchange for millions in shared revenue from this game. Once again, it was just a temporary solution, and it seems that the real solution was nowhere near. This one will expire on May 31 when things can get quite complicated unless there is a deal in sight. If the two sides do not manage to reach a deal, the state risks losing more than $350 million in gaming revenue.

One of the Problems is Sports Betting

Many reports reveal that the outline of the draft that Gov. DeSantis and his team currently review included sports betting authorization in the state. The Seminoles would act as sort of a hub for placing bets at pari-mutuels in Florida. According to the provision, in-play betting would also be authorized at professional sports venues. However, Gov. DeSantis believes that this could affect games’ integrity, and he doesn’t seem too happy about it. Furthermore, he stated that he must consider in-play betting and whether it should be limited only to sports arenas or be legalized across the state.

Long story short, the Governor has not really ‘put forth opposition’ to the idea of gambling on sports in this state, but that he is willing to further discuss this idea with both sides.

The Problem With Card Games

Card games have been one of the main reasons for disagreement between the two sides, and the draft suggests a possible new deal that proposes a drastic change in the way card games are played at pari-mutuels. This change will make the game entirely unprofitable for pari-mutuels of the state. Furthermore, these facilities will be allowed to run operations related to sports betting but the revenues made from wagering will have to be shared with the Seminoles.

All in all, the lawmakers of the state will receive up to $400 million annually from the Seminoles, with potential to go up to $500 million. This is certainly an improvement, compared to $350 they paid to the state, but the lawmakers believe they could have done a much better job here.

Seminole Tribe and Florida Officials to Discuss New Compacts

The lawmakers of Florida and the Seminole Tribe have been in strong disagreement over a key provision when it comes to a former compact related to gambling that has expired five years ago. The two sides definitely needed to sit down and talk about new compacts, and it seems that the solution is actually closer than we might think. The resolution is out there, and the new compact would probably include provision expansion in Florida.

According to their previous compact, which became active back in 2010, the Seminole tribe owned an agreement about revenue sharing. In other words, part of their revenue would go to the state of Florida, which means that the Seminole tribe basically paid hundreds of millions of dollars directly into the coffers of the Sunshine State. The compact had to be renewed in 2015, which was pretty difficult since both sides were unable to reach an agreement. Governor Rick Scott somehow managed to convince the Seminole tribe to renew their compact, despite the fact that they were not really content with it. Therefore, their revenue sharing agreement continued to live on while the two sides were searching for some better options in order to create an equilibrium where they are both happy.

Therefore, the loose agreement that they came upon in 2015 will expire in May, and they are bound to come up with a new one sooner or later. This fact alone will cause the loss of up to $350 million in 2019, and the Senate has already imposed high taxes in order to secure the state budget, should they do not reach an agreement with the tribe.

One of the main reasons why such an agreement was not possible in the past is that the tribe claims that the state has violated previous compacts. In fact, 2016 was pretty much a turbulent year for the Seminoles tribe which took the state of Florida to court claiming that Florida officials were not allowed to introduce blackjack at pari-mutuel tracks, as Seminoles had an exclusive right to this card game. The court actually agreed on this and sided with the Seminoles. This escalated in a full-time hatred between the two sides, with Seminoles threatening to put an end to the revenue-shared system which would severely affect Florida’s budget. All of this tension was later approached by Scott who made both sides cooperate once again, making a short term deal which would expire soon.

Both sides are quite aware of this fact which is the reason why they sat down last week trying to figure out everything and come up with a deal that would be beneficial for both sides. Senator Wilton Simpson is the one who is currently leading the discussions as the two sides have a very tight deadline that they must not cross. In other words, we will have an opportunity to hear the news about a potential agreement very soon, as days, if not hours, are left for them to complete their talks.

Florida has been pretty active when it comes to gambling, as voters decided in a poll that they should be the ones in charge when it comes to controlling gambling in the state. A ballot in November 2018 put all activities related to gambling in the hands of the residents of Florida who will also decide on things such as expansions. On the other hand, many officials of Florida, including Governor Ron DeSantis, do not feel like giving the Seminole tribe more autonomy when it comes to gambling. In other words, this fight might be far from over.