General Assembly is Ready to Review Virginia’s New Casino Regulations

Lawmakers in Virginia have been discussing opening up the state’s casino industry for years. It seemed as if casinos were set to become legal earlier this year, yet certain state officials are still asking for revisions to the gambling legislation. This week, the state General Assembly is meeting to discuss Virginia’s new casino regulations.

Virginia Casinos

If all goes according to plan, Class III casinos will be approved in this state before the summer. Today, we’re going to discuss the changes to gambling laws here. We’ll also look at what other forms of gambling may become available over the next couple of years.

Let’s get into it!

Virginia’s Governor is Asking for Changes to Proposed Casino Laws

More states are beginning to embrace their gambling industries. It seems like every few months, another state announces it’s becoming interested in legalizing casinos. This is certainly true in Virginia, which has been looking at the legalization of casinos for years.

As we already mentioned, it seemed like casinos would become legal here last year. Things failed to materialize, however, and another push to legalize casinos began in the beginning of this year. In February, news broke that the House and Senate approved a set of casino bills.

That didn’t mean casinos instantly became legal here. Virginia Governor Ralph Northam began taking a closer look at this legislation. Eventually, the Governor asked for an amendment to the casino bills that would allow revenue from these gambling venues to go towards public school construction.

It was a little disappointing for those hoping to see casinos legal this year. Northam’s decision now means the House and Senate will need to agree on the new terms. It’s unclear whether this will take place.

The fact that all US land-based casinos are shut down right now isn’t helping either. There are some analysts that feel the country’s casino industry will never look the same once this pandemic has ended.

This week, Virginia state officials will once again look at the casino legislation being presented.

Officials Are Now Set to Review Virginia’s New Casino Regulations

It’s clear that legalizing casinos is not easy. As many in Virginia now realize, there are several legal steps that need to be taken before these gambling venues can be approved. This includes gaining approval from the state’s General Assembly.

Once again, the House and Senate will need to review the new amendment presented by Governor Northam. These state government bodies will need to approve House Bill 4 and Senate Bill 36. If both bills are approved once again, casinos may finally become legal here.

Senator Todd Pillion gave an enthusiastic statement about this new meeting to the media yesterday.

“Fixing our deteriorating schools is an issue that unites legislators across political and geographical divides,” he said. “Republicans and Democrats from Lee County to Norfolk recognize this is an issue that needs our attention. The amendment, which I support, will allow a portion of state revenues collected from casino projects to be returned to localities to fix our schools, directly benefiting our students and teachers. I am hopeful this solution will have broad bipartisan support in both the Senate and House.” 

It remains to be seen whether or not these bodies will decide to approve these bills. If they are rejected, the legislation will go back to the Governor. It would then be discussed again once again in November.

Are any other forms of gambling likely to be approved here?

Sports Betting is Likely to Become Legal in Virginia Soon

Since May of 2018, every state in the country has been able to legalize sports betting. That’s due to the Supreme Court striking down PASPA. Today, more than 20 states have officially legalized this form of gambling.

Lawmakers in Virginia have discussed plans to allow sports betting for years. It now appears 2020 is the year this happens. During today’s meeting to discuss Virginia’s new casino regulations, lawmakers will also decide on whether or not to approve sports gambling legislation.

Most feel this will happen. The main focus point will be on how much sports betting licenses cost. Under the current plans, it will cost $250,000 for a three-year license and an additional $200,000 to renew these licenses.

Most agree that sports betting will be hugely popular in this state. Virginia is known for its large sports fan base. Governor Northam seems to recognize this, and almost all analysts expect him to sign the sports gambling bills once approved by the House and Senate.

It’s an exciting time for gambling fans in Virginia. This year, two separate forms of gambling are likely to become legal here.

Do you think Virginia’s new casino regulations will be approved? Let us know in the comments section below!

Governor Northam Amends Virginia’s Casino Legislation

For years, lawmakers in Virginia have been pushing to expand the state’s gambling industry. The legalization of casinos, they argue, would help to bring the state millions in additional revenue every single year. Unfortunately, Governor Northam has amended Virginia’s casino legislation and it’s unclear when casinos will be able to operate here.

Virginia Sign

It’s disappointing news for gambling fans in this state. Today, we’re going to discuss when casinos may finally be able to operate here. We’ll also look at how other state’s casino industries are faring right now.

Let’s get into it!

Virginia’s Road to Casino Legalization

Virginia is one of the few states in the country that does not currently allow casino gambling. It wasn’t always this way, though. Many decades ago, this state had a large and successful gambling industry. Today, however, almost no legal forms of wagering are allowed here.

The first attempts to legalize casinos here appeared in the mid-90s. None of these early attempts made it to the Senate. That hasn’t stopped proponents of this industry from trying, though.

Recently, another major push to allow casinos has been taking place. This time, it appears things may actually be successful. Two different bills are being considered here to officially allow casinos in five different cities.

In February, news broke that lawmakers had advanced these bills. Several anti-gambling groups began voicing their concerns, claiming it would lead to higher rates of crime and gambling addiction. Despite these claims, state leaders seemed to be embracing the land-based casino industry.

Things are being delayed once again. News is now coming out that the Governor is amending the policy to allow casinos to start operating. Here’s what we know about this situation.

Governor Decides to Amend Virginia’s Casino Legislation

Allowing land-based casinos to operate in Virginia was never going to be easy. Completely new laws had to be introduced. This week, Governor Ralph Northam decided to delay things a little bit to ensure the money earned from legal casinos goes to the right place.

Governor Northam is now proposing an amendment that would use casino revenue to fund public school construction. Carter Hutchinson, deputy policy advisor for the Governor, recently spoke about the situation to the media.

“The governor is going to amend that provision of the bill that says roughly two-thirds of the [tax] revenue goes to the general fund,” he said. “He is going to amend that language to designate the funding go to school construction, renovation and repairs. The language is going to be relatively broad given the revenue from the casinos won’t start coming in for at least a couple years, probably more.”

Lawmakers in Virginia will meet once again on April 22nd to further discuss Virginia’s casino legislation. At this time, a decision will be made on whether or not to officially approve the new bills.

A 2019 study concluded that legalized casinos could bring Virginia $900 million within five years. A casino in Bristol could bring the state $15 million annually.

We’ll need to wait and see how things go later this month.

US Casino Industry Remains Shut Down

It’s an unusual time for Virginia to consider allowing land-based casinos. As most are well-aware, almost all land-based casinos in the state are completely shut down due to Covid-19. It’s unclear when this will change.

It’s a difficult situation. Health experts believe that casinos pose a serious risk for infection spread. Because of this, some feel it may be months before any land-based gaming venues are able to open again.

The casino shutdown has been seriously damaging for several states. Nevada, in particular, is losing out on an enormous amount of revenue right now. Several major casino operators in Las Vegas are losing millions of dollars every single day due to these regulations.

Atlantic City is beginning to suffer, as well. A recent report claims the city may begin losing $500 million every month. Unless things change, it will be extremely difficult for many casino companies to continue operations here.

Virginia’s casino legislation may soon be approved. It will be interesting to see how the new coronavirus affects these plans.

Stay tuned for more Virginia casino news over the next few weeks!