Sheldon Adelson Pushing For Casino Legalization In Texas
Texas could become a major gambling destination if the state decides to legalize gambling. However, there have been multiple attempts in the past to legalize gambling in the Lone Star state and none of them have had any success. But things are about to change.
Texas Economy Will Benefit
The state has faced a number of challenges in 2020 brought on by COVID-19. One of the biggest concerns is the economy. State legislators are eager to get money into the struggling economy and legalizing the casino industry is one sure way to do this.
This has given billionaire Sheldon Adelson, chairman of Las Vegas Sand Corp, a unique opportunity to use his vast resources and make a stronger case for casino gambling in Texas. He has already hired eight Austin lobbyists to help in the upcoming January legislative session. Adelson has a lot of influence within the state legislator as he has already contributed $4.5 million to the Republican Party in the state.
The chances of legalizing casino gambling are increasing as more legislators are showing interest. State Rep. Joe Deshotel, a Port Arthur Democrat, thinks that casino gambling would be a great topic to tackle in the upcoming legislative session. With legal gambling, Texans don’t have to cross state lines to have their fun which will ensure that Texas money remains in the state.
Deshotel has a proposal that would allow certain coastal areas in the state to permit casino gambling. In the past, state legislators have not shown much interest in gambling bills but this time around the circumstances are very different.
The pandemic has crippled the economy and caused a massive deficit in the state budget. Texas needs more money coming in and the lucrative gambling market is a great way to bring in revenue. The gambling taxes will be used to pay for a number of different projects in the state including expensive windstorm insurance for businesses and home owners, it will also help with catastrophic flooding assistance.
Texas’ legislative session will start in January and will mainly focus on smart budgeting to fight the $4.6 billion shortfalls that it is facing. While legal gambling is being considered, other measures are also getting attention like legalizing marijuana.
Las Vegas Sands Corp is not the only operator interested in setting up casino operations in Texas. There are a number of domestic and international gaming operators who are eager to establish themselves in the Lone Star state. We will get a better idea of how things will pan out after the first quarter of 2021.