USA – It is reported that the state of Georgia is still unsure on whether or not to legalise casino and sports gambling despite a shock state-wide poll by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution; a daily newspaper in the metropolitan area of Atlanta, Georgia, being in favour.
At present, the only form of legal gambling in the ‘Peach State’ is the Georgia Lottery – a government organised lottery that turns over an estimated one billion dollars every year.
Georgia has an estimated population of 11 million and the recent survey showed that a majority of participating voters were in favour of introducing both sports betting and casino gambling in the ‘Empire State of the South’.
It is no secret that gambling in Georgia is one of the largest and longest running debates in state politics, with proposals and objections dating back to 2015.
However, with the consistent budget cuts and promise of additional funding and jobs in the state, 2020 could well be the year that legislation is passed.
Currently, Georgia’s ‘scholarship and grant program that rewards students with financial assistance in degree, diploma, and certificate programs’ HOPE Program (Helping Outstanding Pupils Educationally) is part funded by gambling revenue from the state’s lottery.
Proposals on sports betting and casino gambling revenue outline further plans to boost HOPE Program.
State government ministers and officials are reportedly torn between the debate on both sides, whereby those who are for and against the proposals are outlining their beliefs and reasons on gambling.
Many are worried about the negative effects of gambling addiction, whereas others are seeing the financial budget boosts of other states from sports and casino gambling revenue, such as New Jersey and North Carolina.