Current Alabama gaming bill faces Senate headwinds

alabama betting news february 2024

Updated February 24, 2024By Chris Boline
alabama betting news february 2024

With a new year comes new gaming proposal opportunities in the Cotton State. However, while there is a new bill in front of Alabama lawmakers, it would appear that it is facing opposition per a recent report. The legislation paving the way for the potential legalization of lottery, casinos, and sports betting in Alabama seemingly lacks votes in the Senate as noted in the article. Senator Greg Albritton, who handles the bill to allow voters to decide whether to authorize the gambling expansion, said the plan does not have the votes to pass at this point. Moreover, per the same article, Albritton told the media that the Republican caucus, which holds 27 of the 35 seats in the Senate, discussed the legislation earlier this month. 

For this article, SBS will be going over what to look for from the latest gaming news coming from Alabama along with more notes and info about the state of gaming there. 

Albritton working on support from fellow Senate peers

As referenced in one report, Albritton has noted that he has to “try to change some senators’ minds” to reach the 21 votes needed to pass the constitutional amendment, which equates to three-fifths of the Senate. Moreover, the Senator did say that he thinks a majority of the Senate supports the plan but noted the legislation would not be moving this week. The next step for it will be consideration at the Senate Tourism Committee. One outlet in the state quoted Albritton, who said that he had heard of concerns over the casinos and a voting date on the constitutional amendment, but was not sure of the full scope of the discussion. 

“You will have to ask opponents and proponents of said issue,” Albritton said regarding casinos. “I don’t know. We’ve got casinos now, and they have continued to increase. All we are trying to do with the bill is decrease them. So I don’t know if they want more or not. I can’t figure it out.” 

Per the same report, the voting date on the constitutional amendment would take place on the November election date. Alabama voters have not had a chance to vote on a lottery proposal since 1999. 

Albritton notes how close bill is to passing in Senate

The Senator from Atmore said that he thinks the bill in its current form would pass, but he said the vote would be “very, very close.” Moreover, he added, “It will depend on several factors that I am trying to get a handle on.” There is still time for the bill to progress in the Senate. For example, Tuesday, February 27th will be the seventh meeting day of the legislative session, which can last up to 30 meeting days spread over up to 15 weeks. Also earlier this month, the House passed the constitutional amendment, HB151, by a vote of 70-32, clearing the 63-vote requirement. The House also passed a companion bill, HB152, that details some specifics about how the constitutional amendment would be implemented. 

Moreover, the supporters of the plan say that the vote is long overdue and that the legislation would replace an inconsistent set of gaming amendments with a uniform law. The plan would establish the Alabama Gaming Commission to license and regulate casinos and sports betting. Moreover, this commission would include a law enforcement body that could prohibit what proponents say is widespread illegal gambling, which they say causes harm and provides no benefit to the state. 

Alabama could receive millions in gaming tax revenues

In addition to the casinos and other entertainment platforms being created for the state, one news outlet in the state cited the financial benefits of gaming legalization. The Legislative Services Agency estimated that the state could receive up to about $900 million a year in net revenues from lottery, casinos, and sports betting. On the other hand, though, opponents of the bill have said that it would lead to more gambling addictions that hurt families. They have also disapproved of the way the legislation picks locations for the casinos. 

The proposed constitutional amendment enables the commission to license up to seven casinos. As noted in the same article, the companion bill designates where six of those casinos would be located. The legislation would also create a public corporation to run a state lottery, which could also include multi-state games and scratch-off games. Under the plan, the legislature would appropriate net revenue from the lottery for education purposes and the casino and sports betting revenue for non-education purposes. A similar plan was sponsored by Albritton three years ago, although the legislation died in the House. However, some of the membership has changed since then. 

Other notes and information on Alabama wagering

After you are all dialed in regarding the latest gaming updates coming from the Cotton State, make sure to tap into the great variety of resources available to you only at SBS. Of course, for even more information on the topic at hand, our sports betting in Alabama guide has your back with all the latest gaming news and updates there. Moreover, for those looking to maximize their wagers, the best bonus betting sites rundown is a must-bookmark page. Here you can find tips for getting the most out of promotions along with a catalog of different bonus offers available to you. Finally, for those on the go, an excellent page to brush up on is the best betting apps breakdown where you can find out more regarding the perks of mobile betting and how you can take full advantage of it. 

About the Author

Chris Boline

Chris Boline

As a devout aficionado of sports, Chris Boline has carved a career within the athletic realm. A skilled scribe, he boasts a decade-long portfolio that encompasses coverage of the NBA G League, the Los Angeles Chargers, football in the Mountain West Conference, and basketball.
Beyond his professional pursuits, Chris is deeply invested in his community and dedicates his leisure hours to serving on boards, collaborating with community organizations, and cherishing the company of loved ones.

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