At long last the Florida Senate and Florida House have released their respective gaming bills for the 2014 legislative session.
They represent divergent views on gaming expansion within the sunshine state and left many people shaking their heads. The Florida Senate put out a bill, actually three bills that do the following: establish a gaming commission, leave future gaming expansion in the hands of the voters, and allow for one destination resort casino in Broward County and one in Miami-Dade County.
The 400-plus page Senate bill is a heavy lift and daunting read for those who require little sleep. In order to qualify for the destination resort license a company would have to invest in excess of one billion dollars and then be subject to a thirty-five percent tax rate. The list of prospective takers at those numbers is probably well zero, nada, nobody. The House version has no mention of destination resorts. It establishes oversight but is a less divisive more palatable bill.
Both chambers of the legislature realize the Seminole Indian compact must be renegotiated before anything substantial taking place on non-tribal lands can effectively move forward. Looks like the Florida legislature will have to play wait and see as Governor Scott and Seminole CEO, Jim Allen, will really be calling the shots and determining the future landscape of Florida gaming.