Legislators Failed to Pass the Florida Gambling Legislation


One of the things that make Florida’s gambling industry struggle is the fact that it is illegal in the state except in casinos that have been owned by the Seminole Tribe of Florida. It is also allowed in places such as dog and horse tracks that are found in different parts of the state. There have been different legislative attempts to change the gambling law in the state.

There were different proposals this year that included the plan to allow Seminoles to add craps and roulette in its lineup of games in its casinos.

Opposing Views?

Time was about to run out during the 2018 legislative session when Florida Senate president Joe Negron together with House Speaker Richard Corcoran mentioned that they were at an impasse on the new Florida gambling legislation.

Both Florida house along with the Senate each passed their own gambling bill. The Senate version of the bill is far more aggressive when it comes to permitting new slots. Unfortunately, the legislative bodies were too far apart in order to find a common ground with each other.

The statement read “Despite the good faith efforts of both the House and Senate, a gaming bill will not pass the legislature this session”. In addition to this, it also said that “We appreciate the tireless efforts of Chair Hutson and Chair La Rosa, as well as the many members of the House and Senate, and the professional staff, who worked diligently during these final days and hours of session”.

“Gaming remains one of the most difficult issues we face as a legislature. We are pleased with the progress made over the last week and know that our colleagues will continue to work on this important issue”.

The Floridians will have a chance to vote on a constitutional amendment in the next eight months. They will be able to vote for the Voter Control of Gambling in Florida. This would require any expansion in the future of gambling in Florida to be subjected by a state vote.

The constitutional amendment is among the reasons why the lawmakers are quiet anxious to pass the bill. The legislators also want a steady stream of income that comes from Seminole Tribe of Florida. However, the money could be in danger after a federal court ruled the “designated player” games at pari-mutuel cardrooms in different parts of the state.

The Senate just this week managed to pass a broad gambling law that has allowed slots into eight counties including Brevard, Duval, Gadsden, Hamilton, Lee, Palm Beach, St. Lucie, and Washington. These are states that voters signed off on letting pari-mutuel add some slots.

The House, on the other hand, made a concession that agrees to allow the slots in three of the counties. However, after the subsequent offers, both the house and senate have appeared to be apart.

Did It Just Run Out of Time?

Was it really because Senate and the House couldn’t agree that failed the passing of a new gambling legislation for the state? If you will ask Republican Senator Bill Galvano, he said that “I think it was time, more than anything else”. The lawmakers had to adjust the session up until 11:59 pm hoping to make something happen.


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