House slot-only bill emerges
Rep. Bill Galvano calls the House gambling plan released today a "solid framework" for negotiations with the Senate's plan to expand gambling for casinos and parimutuels throughout the state. "The Senate proposal has gone as far toward expansion as they could go,'' he said.
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Some major differences between the House and Senate:
• The Senate plan gives the Seminole Tribe full-fledged casinos, including
roulette, craps, slots, blackjack and other banked card games and poker without
betting limits. In return, the tribe would pay $400 million a year in revenue
sharing to the state for 25 years, with up to 25 percent more, depending on net
• The House gives the tribe slot machines only, with $100 million a year going
to the state for 10 years.
• The Senate proposal reduces the tax rate on the "racinos" in Miami-Dade and
Broward to 35 percent on slot machine revenues, down from the 50 percent they now
pay. The House plan does not lower the tax rate.
• The Senate plan gives Miami-Dade and Broward racinos blackjack and other
banked card games on top of their Las Vegas-style slot machines. The 18 other
parimutuels around the state, including Hialeah Race Track with its new quarter horse racing, would get electronic bingo -- also known as video lottery terminals. The House plan gives the competitors no additional options.
Hialeah, however, would have to run a full schedule of races for two years
before getting the games -- the same requirement imposed on all the other racetracks. The House plan offers no new games.