Latest News
1/11/09 to 1/17/09

$14K forfeited in W'burg gambling case

KY - Man who installed gambling machines at the Pilot Station in Williamsburg will have his gambling machines destroyed... You make payments for people who win, either in store merchandise or cash or any other thing of value, that's a crime," Trimble [Commonwealth Attorney] said. "Playing the machines themselves if they don't pay off in store merchandise, and you just get the benefit of winning a hand at poker or whatever game it is, that's fine." / Times Tribune of Corbin / By Sean Bailey / January 14, 2009

2 North Vegas officers arrested in beating case

NV - Two North Las Vegas police officers were arrested Thursday after one was accused of beating a California man who was handcuffed in custody at a local casino, and both falsified their reports about it, a department official said. "The allegation is that Miles hit the man and threw him to the ground while he was handcuffed inside the holding cell at the casino," / The Associated Press / Jan 15, 2009


AZ - The National Council of Legislators from Gaming States (NCLGS) Executive Committee here on January 10 voted to support efforts encouraging 100% smoke-free gaming facilities in the states. The resolution was passed by the NCLGS Committee on Casinos by an overwhelming margin on January 9 and was subsequently adopted by the group's governing Committee the following day.

January 13, 2009

After strong numbers during holidays, slots revenues slump

PA - The cash-strapped casino resort entered into an unusual arrangement at the end of 2008 which allowed DeNaples to privately fund the payment of certain Mount Airy expenses, despite being banned from participating in its management. The ban resulted from the suspension of DeNaples' gaming license in early 2008, after he was indicted for lying about his ties to an organized crime figure. / Pocono Record / By HOWARD FRANK / January 15, 2009

Allegheny County councilman files suit over gambling fund

PA - An Allegheny County councilman this afternoon filed suit against the county and its Redevelopment Authority over the creation of an economic development and tourism fund, which he says was illegally created to handle the county's share of state gambling proceeds. "the money in that account ought to be held in a county account and not some private account... / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette / By Karamagi Rujumba / January 13, 2009

Analyst: Colorado gambling vote to help Ameristar

CO - Voters in Black Hawk, where Ameristar owns a casino, approved legislation that would raise maximum bets to $100 from $5; allow 24-hour gambling and permit craps and roulette gaming. The changes are scheduled to take place on July 1. / Associated Press / 01.14.09

Annual report shows dramatic fall of casino profits

NV - Taking the biggest hit were the 54 casinos in the balance of Clark County, including Mesquite and North Las Vegas. They reported a net loss of $146.2 million, down 235.9 percent from the previous fiscal year. / By Cy Ryan / Jan 16, 2009

Another gambling plan in the works

OH - For the third time in four years, gambling proponents - led by Argosy-owner Penn National Gaming - will roll the dice on legalizing casinos in Ohio. But this year, they have a new weapon: Ohio's unprecedented $7 billion budget deficit. The Penn National proposal comes just two months after the Pennsylvania-based gambling company - which operates Argosy Casino in Lawrenceburg and Raceway Park in Toledo - spent $38 million to defeat a ballot issue by two Cleveland-area developers to build a casino in Clinton County. Ohio voters rejected that casino plan, the fourth gambling issue defeated here since 1990. / By Jon Craig / January 12, 2009

Tribes hold out hope for Beloit project

- The U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs on Tuesday denied an application to develop a tribal casino at Beloit. It's the second time in a week that the federal government rejected proposals for off-reservation gambling projects in southern Wisconsin. The Bad River and St. Croix Chippewa bands are challenging in court the rules that make it harder to get an off-site casino approved the farther it is from a reservation. The Menominee tribe has filed a similar suit. / by ANN MARIE AMES / Jan. 14, 2009

Band money embezzler sentenced

MI - Sentenced the former treasurer of a school band booster organization to 60 days in jail and probation. Helped himself to $29,500 raised by the non-profit St. Joseph Public Schools Band and Orchestra Parents (BOP). The case is one of a string of embezzlements in Berrien County over the past two years targeting non-profits, businesses and other organizations. But gambling at casinos is behind some of the cases. 500 students were affected by the embezzlement. The theft forced the organization to postpone the purchase of badly-needed instruments and meant no band camp for students last year. / H-P / By SCOTT AIKEN / January 13, 2009

Bank robbery suspect had been gambling

MS - The Mobile man accused of robbing a D'Iberville bank on Monday had been gambling at Coast casinos, said D'Iberville Police Capt. Keith Davis. / Sun Herald / By ROBIN FITZGERALD / Jan. 13, 2009

Bankruptcy boom seen in 2009, no sector spared

- "I think the next three months will determine the fates of a lot of the major retailers," said Robert McMahon, managing director for restructuring at General Electric Co's GE Corporate Lending. "Casino and gaming will continue to feel stress, as will casual dining and newspapers," he added. / Reuters / By Caroline Humer and Chelsea Emery / January 12 2009

Barack Obama Petitioned by Online Gambling Supporters

DC - Considering the popularity of the topic and the one-sidedness of the response, the new administration may be challenging the UIGEA sooner than anticipated. Representative Barney Frank, head of the House Financial Services Committee, has already been the primary leader in Congress in the fight to repeal the UIGEA and allow US residents the choice to play at online casinos. / by K.C. Carmichael / January 16, 2009

Will an intrepid governor shake up sports betting ... and politics?

DE - And yet, soon after he's sworn in on January 20th, there's a chance he'll start an avalanche of unprecedented gambling reform, and become the betting man's biggest hero since Charles McNeil invented the point spread. One way he may do that? Approve sports betting in his state. "You look for places where you can differentiate yourself," says Markell. "And Delaware can consider sports gaming." Gambling options on the Eastern seaboard and on the Internet have been eroding Atlantic City's profits since Sinatra headlined the Sands. Now Delaware-a roll of the dice away from AC... / by Chad Millman

Black Hawk raises stakes on gambling

CO - Tuesday's vote was 54-6 in favor of expanded gambling. Voters agreed to boost maximum bets from $5 to $100 and to add roulette and craps... Opponents fear the higher limits will turn mountain communities with limited-stake gambling - Black Hawk as well as Cripple Creek and Central City - into Las Vegas, bringing heavy traffic and crime to the mountain towns. / Denver Business Journal / January 14, 2009

Black Hawk voters back higher stakes

CO - Voters... Passed an initiative allowing the gambling establishments to boost the betting limits to $100 from $5, add craps and roulette and stay open all day. The casino operators, including Ameristar, pumped millions of dollars into the campaign... Critics... Expansion... Fuel bankruptcies, crime, compulsive gambling and other problems. / Rocky Mountain News / By James Paton / January 14, 2009

Black Hawk's gambling economy tanking - town betting on roulette, craps, $100 bets

CO - Black Hawk now expects its total revenue to decline to $28 million this year from $32 million in 2008 and $34 million in 2007. In response to the downturn, Black Hawk has cut 19 jobs, or almost 20 percent of its positions... / January 13, 2009

Board poised to OK Sunday morning gambling

ME - Maine's Gambling Control Board will likely approve... Sunday morning hours at Bangor's Hollywood Slots Hotel and Raceway, / BDN / By Eric Russell

Business sues casino where stolen funds gambled

MS - Weight Watchers is suing one of the casinos where ex-bookkeeper Edith Dianne Belk spent nearly a quarter million of the almost $1 million she embezzled from the business to support a gambling addiction. / Jimmie E. Gates / January 17, 2009

Businesses raided for illegal gambling

TX - Huntsville police conducted raids on two Huntsville businesses Thursday afternoon in the culmination of a months-long investigation into illegal gambling practices. In order to investigate the way the businesses handled the machines, Roberts initiated an undercover operation, using the machines several times over a period of months. It was through this tactic that he observed illegal activity. It is illegal to gamble for cash in the state of Texas, / By Matthew Jackson / January 15, 2009

COLUMN: Breaking the silence on addiction

- But we don't talk much about America's biggest public health problem. "What funds terrorism, spawns crime, drives up health care costs, spreads AIDS, promotes unwanted teen pregnancy, and frustrates so many efforts to eliminate poverty?" asks Joseph Califano Jr. "Substance abuse and addiction." The economic cost of addiction - $534 billion, "America Anonymous" tells the stories of eight people Denizet-Lewis followed over several years: a heroin addict from Southie, an 80-year-old alcoholic, a grandmother in Harlem addicted to crack, a college student in Boston who can't stay away from sex and pornography, a body-builder addicted to crystal meth and steroids, an addiction counselor hooked on gambling and drugs, a middle-aged woman addicted to food and another driven by a similar addictive urge to shoplift. But the "anonymous" in Alcoholics Anonymous, Gamblers Anonymous and other 12-step programs enforces a silence that has kept what should be a public conversation private. / Mansfield News / By Rick Holmes / Jan 15, 2009

Capital News: Is governor softening up on gambling?

OH - Not hardly, but the governor, in a potential sign of things to come, is no longer as adamantly opposed to the idea of expanding gambling in the state as he was in speaking against last year's casino ballot issue. But then came the gambling question -- specifically, was the governor re-evaluating his opposition to expanding gambling in Ohio. I think gambling is not good for Ohio, and it certainly would not be any preferred course of action on my part. But I am unwilling to close my mind to any argument that is brought to me regarding how we may be able to get through these very difficult times. [Gov.] / by Mark Kovac / 1-14-09

Casino Industry Insider news bites

- Siddiqui, the Fry's Electronics Inc. executive... Has been indicted on charges of having embezzled some $65 million from the company. Mississippi gaming regulators say the state's casinos eliminated 2,300 jobs during the economic slowdown... / January 13, 2009

Casino Industry Targets Texas, Montana, Other States

- More than 60 gambling-related bills are sitting in 17 state legislatures - including 12 in Texas and eight in Montana. Many of the bills would expand gambling. / 1-13-09

Casino pact expires at year's end

WI - A key pact between the city and county of Kenosha and the Menominee Nation will expire at the end of this year, unless the tribe has by then received federal and state approval for its off-reservation casino plan. U.S. Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne denied the tribe's land-into-trust application to develop the $1 billion casino at Dairyland Greyhound Park. / BY JOE POTENTE

Casino profile details luxurious lifestyle of former Fry's executive

NV - When "Mr. S" showed up in Las Vegas, bellboys, butlers and blackjack dealers made sure they were prepared for the high-rolling Fry's Electronics executive flying in from San Jose with his long list of demands. Fiji water, grouped in bottles of three. Golden raisins and warmed mixed nuts. Aramis cologne and badger hair shaving brush. Lint-free towels. Dom Perignon Rose champagne and Kurosawa Sake in the fridge. None of those rules will apply when Mr. S - aka Ausaf "Omar" Umar Siddiqui - is arraigned Thursday in federal court in San Jose on charges that the former Fry's executive laundered about $6 million in kickbacks from vendors to pay off his enormous gambling debts in Las Vegas. "Casinos give you free hotel rooms, free food, free drinks, all that stuff," said David Schwartz, / Mercury News / By Lisa Fernandez / 01/13/2009

Casino stakes raised

PA - The latest: the revelation that Foxwoods chief honcho Michael Thomas was convicted on drug-dealing charges in 1988. He was still granted a gaming license in Pennsylvania despite the prohibition on felons' getting a license within 15 years of the end of their sentences. Thomas... Served nine months of an 18-month prison term, and ended his probation in 1994. / Jan. 13, 2009

Casinos Making Money? Don't Bet On It

CA - In general, Americans are cutting back on spending and some of our local casinos are reporting fewer people are gambling. Some casinos are focusing on data tracking. One of the discussions at the conference was about tracking the busiest times when people are playing and using that information to determine employee scheduling. / KPSP Local 2 News / By Kimberly Cheng / Jan 14, 2009

Change considered in gaming-licensing law

PA - State legislators pushing to reform Pennsylvania's gaming law want to make it harder for felons to get casino licenses by requiring regulators to consider expunged criminal records. The call for change follows a disclosure last week that Michael J. Thomas, head of a Connecticut tribe that is a partner in the Foxwoods Casino project, got a license despite a law banning felons from entering the gaming business within 15 years of serving a sentence. / Inquirer Staff / By Jennifer Lin and Jeff Shields / Jan. 13, 2009

Charged executive a fastidious guest

CA - A Fry... Executive accused of arranging kickbacks to pay for his gambling led a lifestyle as fastidious as it was luxurious, Siddiqui... To be arraigned... On charges he stole $6 million in a kickback scheme with vendors... / Business News / Jan. 14, 2009

Cockfighting Ring May Have National Scope

NM - Two recent cockfighting raids have triggered an investigation into a large-scale criminal operation that includes narcotics and illegal gambling in addition to cockfighting and could extend beyond the borders of New Mexico, officials said. Agents found another 100-plus birds, cockfighting paraphernalia, drugs, guns, and evidence of gambling and illegal alcohol sales. One hundred five roosters found at Elias' home were euthanized after agents found them in "very, very poor health," Five dogs, "exhibited signs of cruelty." Many of the birds were maimed and barely breathing, / By Jeff Proctor / January 09, 2009

Commission won't battle King over bingo's constitutionality

AL - Etowah County Commission members are not planning to battle state Attorney General Troy King any longer about the constitutionality of electronic bingo in the county. Both enabling acts state that bingo is defined as a game played on cards, with the Etowah County amendment including the phrase "or paper" which is almost identical to Houston's County's act. Barber told county officials the reason for the task force is to investigate whether bingo, paper or electronic, is illegal in Alabama. / Times / By Kenneth A. Hobson Jr. / January 13, 2009

Congressman opposes off-reservation Oregon casino

OR - Wu of Oregon says he plans to push incoming leaders of the U.S. Interior Department to reject a... Tribal casino in the Columbia River Gorge. / Jan. 16, 2009

Contractor is sentenced in fraud cases

DE - An Elkton contractor was sentenced Friday in Superior Court to three and a half years for home-improvement fraud. Was accused of bilking 16 victims in New Castle County, usually by taking half the money for a home-improvement project up-front, cashing the check and never returning. Conner said Carroll struggled with alcohol and gambling problems and those were likely contributors. / The News Journal / By SEAN O'SULLIVAN / January 17, 2009

Couple gets prison time for gambling with stolen funds

NJ - A man and woman who gambled in Atlantic City with $1 million in stolen funds... Admitted embezzling the money from her employer, / Cherry Hill Courier Post / January 11, 2009

Court revives W.Va. video lottery ad restrictions

WV - A federal appeals court reinstated West Virginia's video lottery advertising restrictions Tuesday, ruling that the state has a legitimate interest in raising money without contributing to compulsive gambling. Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III wrote. "It has done so by attempting to raise revenues necessary for education and infrastructure without magnifying the social maladies often associated with gambling addictions.'' / Associated Press / By LARRY O'DELL / Jan 13, 2009

Court to hear iMEGA's UIGEA appeal in April

- The federal lawsuit, iMEGA v. Keisler, et al., was brought by iMEGA against the United States Department of Justice, the Federal Trade Commission and the Federal Reserve. It challenges the constitutionality of the UIGEA, which prohibits United States financial institutions from processing transactions from the United States to "unlawful" Internet gambling sites, including online poker sites and online casinos. / By Shari Geller / Jan. 16, 2009

Coyote Valley Pomo official arrested on embezzlement charges

CA - The treasurer of the Coyote Valley Band of Pomo Indians has been charged with embezzling from the tribe, the second tribal member to face charges since the tribe was scandalized by the 2006 federal indictments of its entire tribal council. The indictments followed a raid on tribal offices in 2004. Nearly 100 federal, state and local law enforcement agents descended on Shodakai Casino, tribal offices and the homes of the tribal council members, seizing computers and files. / THE PRESS DEMOCRAT / By GLENDA ANDERSON / January 15, 2009

Critics Attack License For Foxwoods Philly

PA - Critics of a proposed Foxwoods Philadelphia casino are calling for a review of the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board's decision to grant the casino partners a license despite Mashantucket Pequot Chairman Michael Thomas' 1988 drug-selling conviction. Pennsylvania Senate Majority Whip Jane Orie, a lawyer and prosecutor for 10 years, said the board erred in following the 1979 law which she says was clearly contradicted by the 2004 law prohibiting recent felons from the state's gaming industry. Orie said she plans to write to the governor and the gaming board demanding that the license for the Foxwoods casino be revoked. / By David Collins / 1/11/2009

Democrats to Quickly Reverse Online Casino Midnight Rules

DC - The New York Times reports today that Democratic leaders in Congress are so incensed by the Bush administration's enacting of a series of midnight regulations they are looking for methods to quickly undo the new policies. / by Joshua McCarthy / January 12, 2009

EDITORIAL: Grim news on the gaming front

NV - Visitor volume is way down, and Nevada casinos are hurting. A new report released Friday by the state Gaming Control Board highlights the depth of the pain. The combined expenses of casino, rooms, food and beverage departments increased by 16.2 percent last year, while total revenue decreased 1 percent. / Las Vegas Review-Journal / Jan. 17, 2009

Eden Prairie man sentenced for embezzling $8.5M

MN - Eight years in prison for embezzling $8.5 million dollars from his employer, ING Reinsurance. He spent the money on gambling, cars and entertainment expenses. / / 01/13/2009

Editorial: Ohio must weigh gambling expansion carefully

OH - Facing a $7 billion deficit in the two-year state budget he must devise, Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland says he's willing to reverse his stand against the expansion of gambling. But what form of gambling is Strickland open to? And how far down the road is he willing to go in joining this arms race? Does he see a few resort casinos or racetrack casinos in his state? Is he open to video poker parlors, the kind that invaded many West Virginia neighborhoods when the idea was to reduce and regulate the illegally run machines they replaced? / The Herald-Dispatch / January 12, 2009

Embezzler gets 8 years for $8.5M fraud

MN - Four-year $8.5 million embezzlement at ING Reinsurance Corp. For gambling trips to Las Vegas... / January 13, 2009

Entrepreneur wants to build slots casino in Arundel Minor sees proceeds saving horse racing

MD - A wealthy entrepreneur who denounced slot machines as the "cancer" of the horse-racing industry now wants to build a slots casino in Anne Arundel County - as a cure for Maryland's ailing racetracks. Halsey Minor said in an interview yesterday that he still objects to installing slots at tracks and instead wants to develop a standalone casino with the proceeds funding his self-styled crusade to save horse racing. Maryland voters ratified a constitutional amendment last year to legalize 15,000 slot machines at five locations around the state. / By Laura Smitherman and Gadi Dechter / January 13, 2009

Eric Holder Promises to Continue Going After Online Gambling

DC - The online gambling sector might not be too thrilled learning that the soon-to-be-sworn-in Attorney General, Eric Holder, has informed a staunch supporter of Internet gambling prohibition he has every intention of enforcing the Unlawful Internet Gaming Enforcement Act (UIGEA). In an exchange with Arizona Republican Senator Jon Kyl, Mr. Holder affirmed his position. / by C Costigan / 01/17/2009

Ex-Manager of State Bowling Group Admits Embezzlement

NY - The former manager of the New York State USBC Bowling Association has pleaded guilty to embezzling nearly $272,000 from the group and gambling it away at Turning Stone casino. / 15 of January , 2009

Ex-S.C. official charged with embezzling millions

SC - The former finance director for the South Carolina Department of Social Services was arrested Thursday on charges of embezzling millions from the agency. Moore, 61, admitted taking a smaller amount of money to spend on alcohol, gambling, and strippers, federal officials said. Moore admitted he distributed 200 checks over four years, for a total of $1.3 million, saying he spent money he got back on alcohol, gambling and strippers. But prosecutors say a Social Services audit showed $5.5 million missing from the agency, money they say Moore took. / The Associated Press / By MEG KINNARD / January 17, 2009

Ex-bar owner gets prison for gambling

WV - The former owner of Drummy's Bar and Grill in St. Albans was sentenced in federal court Tuesday to a year and a day in prison for his role in a gambling ring that stretched from Welch to Dunbar. Drumheller, 48, admitted that he acted as a go-between for Welch pharmacist Saad Kamil Deeb and a bookie in Dunbar, sometimes placing as much as $50,000 per week in bets on behalf of his friend. A former state liquor inspector who admitted he placed illegal bets through Deeb, was sentenced to three years probation on tax evasion charges. / By Andrew Clevenger / January 14, 2009

Federal court dismisses county's casino lawsuit

CA - In a potentially decisive blow to the county's hopes of blocking a controversial casino development just outside the city of Ione, federal district court Judge Richard W. Roberts on Thursday dismissed the county's lawsuit. The five-member band, headed by chairwoman Rhonda Morningstar Pope, has been seeking the ability to construct a gaming and entertainment facility featuring 1,150 slot machines and 40 gaming tables, / By Raheem Hosseini / January 13, 2009

Feds may not be done with gov's go-to guy Kelly

IL - Kelly had been finance director of Blagojevich's successful campaign -- the main man helping raise the money... In the early days, Blagojevich made Kelly an unpaid adviser in his administration, his influence so blatant that legislators made him file an official economic-disclosure statement as a "special government agent." The man Blagojevich entrusted to represent him on gambling issues was a high-roller in hock to a mob bookie. According to his guilty plea, Kelly hid the use of $150,000 from his roofing company to pay off that debt and also disguised using company funds to pay a separate $147,500 gambling debt to a Las Vegas casino. / Sun-Times / BY MARK BROWN / January 17, 2009

Feds reject proposed Beloit tribal casino

WI - An application to develop a tribal casino at Beloit has been denied by the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs, marking the second time in a week that the federal government rejected proposals for off-reservation gambling projects in southern Wisconsin. Rep... Baldwin, D-Wis. Sen. Robson, D... Hope that the... Obama administration... Will reverse the decision. / Associated Press / January 13, 2009

Florez aids felon tied to casino

CA - Valley state Sen. Dean Florez is sticking up for a felon in the man's tussle with the state over his family's business -- a Bay Area card room that has donated to the senator's political campaigns. Medina was sentenced to 15 months in prison for evading $1.1 million in federal taxes by reporting personal expenses as business expenses. Lucky Chances has contributed $15,000 to Florez's political accounts since 2005, including $6,000 for Florez's planned run for lieutenant governor in 2010, according to state records. Florez's letter probably carried some weight because he is a member of the Governmental Organization Committee. The panel oversees gambling legislation, including the rules the gambling commission enforces. Florez was chairman of the committee until last year. Florez carried a bill that benefited Lucky Chances. SB 1198, signed by Gov. Schwarzenegger, allowed local governments to do away with wagering limits at card rooms, / By E.J. Schultz / Jan. 13, 2009

Former USA Drug manager given probation for theft

AR - He told police a gambling problem led him to steal money from his employer. / By Tracy M. Neal / January 16, 2009

Former building manager pleads not guilty to theft

ME - The former manager of a Portland apartment building pleaded not guilty this morning to a charge of stealing more than $260,000 from the owner of the 30-unit high rise. Abbott spent most of the money at casinos and various gambling facilities around New England, / Portland Press Herald / By Trevor Maxwell / January 16, 2009

Former employee accused of embezzling $57K from Madison law firm

WI - The former business manager and secretary for Madison lawyer Randall Skiles was charged Wednesday with embezzling at least $57,000 from Skiles from the beginning of 2007... She said she used some of the money to pay outstanding bills and spent other of the money gambling at casinos. / Capital Times / Mike Miller / 1/14/2009

Former police chief pleads guilty to gambling on the job

NY - Admitted to gambling at the Turning Stone while claiming to be at work. / By: Web Staff / January 11, 2009

GOP councilman sues over Pittsburgh casino funds

PA - Allegheny County councilman wants a judge to stop the county from doling out its share of Pittsburgh casino revenues through a private, nonprofit corporation. / The Associated Press / January 14, 2009

GOP wants board 'integrity' restored

PA - Republican state lawmakers unhappy with their representative on the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board are lobbying for the appointment of the former state police deputy commissioner whose criticism of the board's background investigation of Mount Airy Casino Resort owner Louis DeNaples led to calls for gaming reform. ''I have nothing against Sojka, but the time has come for someone to start saying 'no' to the lack of transparency by this board, and to bring fresh ideas and integrity to the board,'' Vereb [Rep.] said. / Of The Morning Call / By Matt Birkbeck / January 15, 2009

Gambling Opponents Prepare For Battle

HI - With the state in the midst of a severe financial crisis, the Hawaii Coalition Against Legalized Gambling is preparing for battle. It's estimated 15.4 million Americans are problem or pathological gamblers. Rohter [VP for the coalition] fears gambling could damage Hawaii's image as a family friendly tourist destination. / By Andrew Pereira / Jan 11, 2009

Gambling board poised to OK Sunday gaming

ME - The Rev. Jerry Mick, pastor of Bangor Baptist Church and president of the Maine Family Policy Council, had led a group of opponents against the proposal, claiming that Sunday morning hours infringed on a sacred time for families. "It's disappointing, but I've come to the point in my life where there isn't anything that upsets me," he said. "It's a money issue and we understand, but we feel that this isn't good for Bangor." / BDN / By Eric Russell / 1/15/09

Gambling company transfers Sullivan land to Seneca Nation

NY - The Seneca Nation of Indians, which has proposed to build a casino here. / Times Herald-Record / By Adam Bosch / January 17, 2009

Gambling opponents weigh in

HI - City officials say they oppose a state legislator's suggestion that legalized electronic gambling in Waikiki and other urban areas might help generate revenue for the state. On Tuesday, state Sen. Donna Mercado Kim said she may propose a bill this session to allow electronic gambling such as slot machines in resort communities to create a new revenue stream. Hawaii and Utah are the only states without legalized gambling. "I've opposed gambling since my earliest days as a council member. I haven't changed my opinion one bit. [Gov. Lingle] / By Peter Boylan / January 15, 2009

Gambling oversight merger urged

WV - Consolidating agencies that regulate the state Lottery, horse and dog racing, bingo, raffles and boxing into a single Gaming Commission could save the state nearly $1 million a year in salaries, a state official told lawmakers... Delegate John Doyle, D-Jefferson, said the proposal is "a mistake and a serious one." Doyle doesn't believe that a single agency should be in charge of regulating both state-sanctioned gambling as well as sporting events, such as racing and boxing. / By Phil Kabler / January 13, 2009

Gambling: Legal or Illegal?

FL - Officials explained how the Governor has authority to negotiate such a compact in good faith but the he needs Legislature support to enter into that compact. The other portion of this compact that makes it illegal is the fact that the those class III table games are illegal in the State of Florida, therefore, are illegal on tribal land. / By: Brittany Benner / 1/13/2009

Commentary: Gaming law has been a bust

PA - Written by the office of now-indicted former State Sen. Vincent Fumo, the bill expanded gaming way beyond the imagination of the framers of the horse-racing protection bill, who merely envisioned slot machines at the state's four racetracks. As it turns out, when slots casinos become operational in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania will have 61,000 slot machines - more than any other state except Nevada. / By Daniel R. Reynolds / Jan. 15, 2009

Georgia May Give Individual Counties The Right To Legalize Gambling

GA - The Legislature in Georgia has always been strongly opposed to changing gambling laws. This year is different, however. The recession is causing many states, not just Georgia, to examine the high revenue that could be created by bringing in casino gambling. / April Gardner / January 17, 2009

Gov. says everything is on table, including gaming

HI - Gov. Linda Lingle said Monday she is willing to discuss everything to help solve the state's budget woes - including legalized gambling. The state's weak fiscal condition is prompting consideration of once-discarded or once-opposed ideas, the governor said. Hawaii and Utah are the only states that allow no form of gambling, including lotteries. The tradition here has been so strong that pending legislation in Congress that would set up a governing entity for Native Hawaiians includes a provision that bars that entity from implementing gambling. But over the weekend, state Senate Ways and Means Committee Chairwoman Donna Mercado Kim, D-Kalihi Valley-Halawa, said she would look at gambling and other revenue generators before considering tax hikes. / Associated Press / By HERBERT A. SAMPLE / 01.13.09

Governor calls on Wyoming to 'ride out the storm'

WY - Freudenthal [Gov.] said he would oppose a bill to expand gambling in the state, but told lawmakers that he would sign a bill that would enter Wyoming into the multistate Powerball lottery. / Associated Press / By BEN NEARY / 01.14.09

Hanover man charged with stealing $16,500 from gas station to fuel a gambling habit

MA - He was using the money to play Keno... / Enterprise News / By Tamara Race / Jan 13, 2009

Harrah's Cherokee Casino to cut 100 jobs in NC

NC - Harrah's Cherokee Casino and Hotel will eliminate nearly 100 jobs because the slumping economy has meant fewer visitors traveling into the North Carolina mountains to gamble. Casino officials said the number of visitors decreased 15 percent in November. / Associated Press / 01.13.09

Harrah's Cherokee cuts jobs

NC - Harrah's Cherokee Casino and Hotel is facing job cuts for the first time in its 11-year history, company officials said on Monday. The casino will reduce its workforce this year by 5 percent - or about 100 jobs. Harrah's Cherokee will continue with a $633 million expansion that will double its floor space. / Jon Ostendorff / January 12, 2009

Hawaii gambling opponents weigh in

HI - City officials say they oppose a state legislator's suggestion that legalized electronic gambling in Waikiki and other urban areas might help generate revenue for the state. / 15 January 2009

House votes to continue impeachment investigation

DC - The House voted Tuesday to renew the unfinished impeachment investigation of U.S. District Judge Thomas Porteous of Louisiana, who is charged with presiding over a trial in which the lawyers involved had given him money. The charges against Porteous include hiding assets from the bankruptcy estate, leaving gambling losses off the list of debts and getting short-term credit from casinos... / January 13 2009

Ill. gov's former top fundraiser pleads guilty

IL - Impeached Gov. Rod Blagojevich's former chief fundraiser has admitted he illegally used corporate funds to pay gambling debts and personal expenses. / The Associated Press / Jan. 16, 2009

Income down 69 percent at Nevada casinos

NV - Profits for Nevada casinos fell 69 percent in the last fiscal year that ended June 30, according to a report today from the Nevada Gaming Control Board. Streshley [agency's chief research analyst] said different expenses increased during the fiscal year, one of the largest being interest expenses, which was $2.1 billion, a jump of 26 percent. Streshley said during the first five months of the 2009 fiscal year, gaming revenues declined almost 13 percent in July, dropped a record 23.3 percent in October and fell 14.8 percent in November. / Las Vegas Review-Journal / By HOWARD STUTZ / Jan. 16, 2009

Iowa lawmakers snuff out debate on smoking ban

IA - Legislative leaders from both parties said they won't meddle with Iowa's ban on indoor smoking despite complaints about exemptions for casino gambling floors. The final measure approved last session was a classic compromise. It banned smoking in bars, restaurants and most other public places but carved out an exemption for the gambling section of casinos. / Associated Press / By MIKE GLOVER / 01.16.09

Is now the time for gambling in Texas?

TX - Las Vegas style gambling casinos could be in the future for Galveston Island. Hurricane Ike devastated Galveston County, but is gambling the push the economy there needs? But it's never been popular with conservative Democrats, nor Republicans like Sugar Land's Charlie Howard. "We don't need something else for people to get addicted to, to get in the poor house, to cause more crime in our state," he said. Another group is also pushing for a change to gaming laws. Indian tribes in Texas want limited casinos allowed on their land. The move was narrowly defeated in the House two years ago. / Miya Shay and Ted Oberg / January 13, 2009

Issues facing Texas Legislature

TX - GAMBLING: Casino gambling advocates are expected to make another push to bring Las Vegas-style gaming to Texas, possibly as an attempt to revitalize hurricane-ravaged Galveston. Texas Indian tribes also will try anew to authorize limited casinos on their land. / The Associated Press / Jan. 12, 2009

Kansas Lottery May Have To Rethink Casino Application Process

KS - Not only are there still no casinos open, but in three of the four zones there are not even contracts signed. The Commission... May have to once again extend the deadline for applications in the Southeast Gaming Zone. The reason? there are no applications that have been filed and there may be none by the current deadline of January 21st. / By Terry Goodwin / January 14, 2009

Kansas Lottery revenues down 4 percent

KS - Kansas Lottery revenues are down 4 percent so far this fiscal year. / The Associated Press / Jan. 14, 2009

Kansas spared from yet another casino blunder

KS - Judge... Ruled the small town south of Wichita unconstitutionally annexed a 5-mile-long, 100-foot-wide strip of land linking Mulvane city limits to the proposed casino [Harrahs] Whatever the reasons, Harrah's withdrawal has now saved hapless state officials from yet another casino embarrassment. / by Rick Alm / January 13, 2009

LA-area man accused of robbing Michigan bank

MI - A California man is accused of flying to Michigan on New Year's Day to rob a bank in Kalamazoo. Sutton gambled with a buddy at a Detroit casino after the Jan. 2 robbery and then returned by air to Los Angeles the next day, / Associated Press / By ED WHITE / January 14, 2009

Lady luck could bring early Sands Casino opening

PA - The $743 million Sands casino in Bethlehem is on pace to open a month earlier than expected, and it appears that how well it does will dictate when construction resumes on the events center, shopping mall and hotel. Construction on the hotel and mall was abruptly halted in October, after the global credit crisis limited how much money Sands could get to finish $17 billion of casino projects worldwide. / The Morning Call / By Matt Assad / January 15, 2009

Land trust could turn the table for CNY tribes Decision involving 18 acres in Verona changes the outlook for Indian nations in Upstate New York

NY - The federal government ushered in a new era last month when, for the first... Trust land, common in Western states, is held by the federal government for the exclusive use of an Indian tribe. The land is permanently free from taxes and local and state laws. Six New York tribes, including the Oneidas [casino operator] and the Cayugas, have filed applications for trust land totaling 18,114 acres. Politicians from the county to federal level have vowed to fight the creation of the Verona trust land, calling it illegal and an 11th-hour land grab by the lame-duck Bush administration. / By Glenn Coin / January 12, 2009

Latest Report Shows Las Vegas Casinos Headed For Financial Disaster

NV - The Nevada Gaming Control Board released a report on Friday that shows that major hotel-casinos in the state had their net income slashed by over sixty five percent in 2008. / By Tom Jones / January 17, 2009

Lawmakers In Iowa Allowing Smoking In Casinos For Political Reasons

IA - The law in question bans smoking in public places, with an exception for casinos in the state. They [legislators]have conceded that the exception to the smoking ban was put in place in order to avoid a battle with the gambling industry. In the world of lobbying in Iowa, the gambling industry is one of the most powerful, with many political connections. / By Larry Rutherford / January 17, 2009

Lawmakers balk at Sebelius budget

KS - GOP leaders also criticized Sebelius' suggestion that the state transfer $56.7 million in expanded gaming revenue to the state general fund because, by law, the state is only supposed to spend gaming revenues on property tax relief, debt service and infrastructure. / Kansas City Business Journal / January 13, 2009

Lawsuit links tribe to '06 murder-for-hire case

CA - The San Manuel Band of Mission Indians has been named in a lawsuit linking the tribe to a 2006 murder-for-hire plot hatched inside a private casino VIP lounge. Previously, tribal members Stacy Cheyenne Barajas-Nunez, 26, and her brother, Erik Barajas, 36, were named in the suit filed last year linking the siblings to the Mexican Mafia gang. Authorities who were investigating the Inland drug trade learned via wiretaps that the Barajas siblings were associated with Salvador Orozco Hernandez -- the Mexican Mafia kingpin of the Inland drug trade. / The Press-Enterprise / By JOHN F. BERRY / January 14, 2009

Lisa M. Buros-Dandurand: Slots spread their corruption far beyond the casinos

NH - I am an ex-casino employee of nearly 15 years... I know personally what casinos do to the families of gamblers, to casino employees and to the surrounding environment. Yes, casino lobbyists can tease our Legislature with promises of free money, but at whose expense? After watching countless people lose their life savings and knowing of the increased suicides and the desperation that drives some to drugs, alcohol and prostitution, I was forced to numb my natural human compassion. I do not know whether this lazy-minded video slot machine proposal now before the Legislature will fix our state's temporary budget problems. Lisa M. Buros-Dandurand is a former casino employee now living in Antrim. / By LISA M. BUROS-DANDURAND / 1-13-09

Lottery Corp. preparing to oversee slots operations if expanded gaming OK'd

KY - If the Kentucky General Assembly passes legislation allowing expanded gaming at the state's horse racetracks, the Kentucky Lottery Corp. could have a system ready to oversee it in as little as nine months. Stumbo (Speaker) recently introduced a bill that would allow video lottery terminals, which are similar to slot machines, at Kentucky tracks. Senate President David Williams has said on many occasions that he is opposed to expanded gaming. Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear campaigned in support of the issue when he ran for office in 2007, / Business First of Louisville / by John R. Karman III / January 16, 2009

Lowering the Drinking and Gambling Age to Save The State

NV - Ken McKenna. He's not only a well-known defense attorney in town. He's now on the state board of education. "I think if the state of Nevada would lower the drinking age to 18, lower the gambling age to 18. We would have instant stimulus on our economy," McKenna says. / Channel 2 News / Nick Montes / Jan 17, 2009

Man arrested after leaving baby in car while he was gambling

LA - A Houma man was arrested last Wednesday after Lafourche Parish deputies found his three-month-old baby left alone in his car while the man was gambling, / Eyewitness News / Chad Bower / January 12, 2009

Many states' lottery sales are rising in recession

- More than half of all states with lotteries have reported rising sales over the past six months, and some researchers say financial insecurity might be driving people to risk more of their money than usual on $1 and $5 instant scratch-offs and other daily games in hopes of a big payoff. Some experts say economic hardships prompt people to justify small-stakes gambles even as they cut back on nonessential goods and services. Of course, many people do not realize that routine spending on lotteries can be just as costly as the occasional visit to a casino. "Small ticket purchases add up over time," said Emily Haisley, a postdoctoral associate at the Yale School of Management who published a research paper on lotteries in The Journal of Behavioral Decision Making in July. John L. Mikesell, a professor at Indian University, published a study in 1994 illustrating lottery sales rise with unemployment rates. "When times are tough, the prospect of spending $1 on a remote chance to potentially change your life is appealing," Mikesell said. / Associated Press / By JUANITA COUSINS / 1-12-09

Mashpee Wampanoag tribe votes on shaky ground?

MA - A simmering factional struggle in the Mashpee Wampanoag tribe reached a fast boil Friday night, when a minimum quorum of the tribal council held an emergency meeting and voted to place chairman Shawn Hendricks on administrative leave and reverse the shunning of several tribe members. They also voted to put tribal council chairman Shawn Hendricks and tribal council secretary Desire Hendricks Moreno on paid administrative leave while the council investigates possible violations of their fiduciary responsibilities, Bingham has spent years trying to bring to light the alleged financial malfeasance of tribe leaders. Only days before she and the others were shunned, they filed a lawsuit in Barnstable Superior Court seeking access to tribe financial documents and contracts with casino investors. / By Stephanie Vosk / January 11, 2009

Mass. Senator files new bill to allow casino gambling in Hampden, Bristol counties

MA - The bill was filed by Sen. Joan Menard, D-Fall River, who is the Senate Majority Whip and represents the First Bristol and Plymouth District. As proposed, it calls for licensing two resort casinos, one in Bristol County and one in Hampden County, as well as authorization for slot machines at the state's four race tracks. Patrick refused to comment on whether he would submit a casino bill while casino-opponent DiMasi, is still speaker. DiMasi led the way when the state House of Representatives overwhelmingly defeated the governor's bill in March. / By NANCY H. GONTER / January 16, 2009

Mayor promises Las Vegas will 'rise again'

NV - Goodman [Mayor] Attempt[ed] to secure federal funding for a museum dedicated to organized crime. "Mob Museum" has been criticized... As an example of wasteful spending. / Associated Press / 01.14.09

Mayors To Share Casino Concerns

IL - Two local mayors, Tony Arredia of Des Plaines and Howard Frimark of Park Ridge, Discuss among other things the planned new casino at River Road and Devon Avenue. Frimark is initiating the scheduled powwow because some residents of Park Ridge are concerned about the potential adverse effects of the planned casino... / Off The Record / By TODD WESSELL / January 14, 2009

McIntyre resubmits Lumbee bill

NC - Tribal and congressional leaders are continuing their fight for federal recognition for the Lumbee tribe. U.S. Rep. Mike McIntyre submitted legislation last week that would grant the Lumbees federal recognition... The bill would prohibit the tribe from participating in gaming. Rep. Nick Rahall II, chairman of the House Committee on Natural Resources, is one of the bill's co-sponsors. The committee has made it a legislative priority to recognized the Lumbee tribe and six Indian tribes in Virginia, according to the committee's Web site. Gaming had been a sticking point in the tribe's efforts to garner support for the bill in the past. / By Venita Jenkins

Miss. casino, slot player argue over $1M jackpot

MS - A Mississippi woman thought she had won a slot machine jackpot when a display lit up $1 million, but the casino says the maximum payout was clearly posted: $8,000. The Mississippi Gaming Commission found that Eash should get $1 million, but a judge later ruled for the casino. / Associated Press / By JACK ELLIOTT JR. / Jan. 14, 2009

Missoula casino robbed at gunpoint

MT - Authorities tell us that at around 10:30 Thursday night, an unknown male entered the casino with a handgun and demanded money. / Jan 16, 2009

Mohegan Sun slashing salaries Across-the-board pay cuts begin Feb. 1

CT - In an effort to avoid layoffs, the Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority said Sunday it is reducing the salaries of all 9,800 Mohegan Sun employees, including senior management, effective Feb. 1. Sunday's announcement comes as both Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods Resort Casino report falling revenues. / Norwich Bulletin / By DEBORAH STRASZHEIM / Jan 11, 2009

Mountaineer Casino laying off 175 workers

WV - Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort, one of the largest employers in West Virginia's Northern Panhandle, announced Friday it is laying off 175 workers, or nearly 9 percent of its work force. / Associated Press / By VICKI SMITH / 01.16.09

NORTH LAS VEGAS: Two police officers arrested in casino incident

NV - This is the second time in consecutive months North Las Vegas police have arrested one of their own. On Dec. 23, James Vernon Clayton, 40, was arrested on charges connected to allegations that he exposed himself and tried to coerce women into sexual activities to get out of traffic tickets. While in the holding cell at the casino, Miles, without provocation, repeatedly slapped Vargas and baited him to fight, according to the report filed against the officers. Balelo threatened to "bust" Vargas in the face if Vargas didn't stop yelling at the hotel security guards who were standing outside the holding cell. Bedwell [Sgt.] said the officers' supervisor became suspicious of what was written in the police report. Police then called the casino and obtained a video with audio of the incident. / Las Vegas Review-Journal / By ANTONIO PLANAS and LAWRENCE MOWER / Jan. 16, 2009

Nebraska lawmaker proposes slots at racetracks

NE - A state lawmaker wants to help save Nebraska's horse tracks by letting visitors pull on slot machines, a plan that a leading gambling opponent said is a bailout that includes a "bribe" aimed at other lawmakers. Pat Loontjer of Gambling with the Good Life, an antigambling group, called the plan "a bailout for an industry that cannot sustain itself, and Americans are sick of bailouts." / Associated Press / By NATE JENKINS / 01.14.09

Nevada casino '08 profits shrink by two-thirds

NV - The report released Friday by the state Gaming Control Board... The annual "Gaming Abstract" report also shows that casino departments at the big resorts had a total of $132.2 million in bad debt expenses and $2.2 billion in complimentary services to high-rolling gamblers. / Associated Press / By BRENDAN RILEY / Jan. 16, 2009

New Bill Surfaces To Bring Casino Gambling To Massachusetts

MA - Still, proponents of the casino gambling have not given up hope. The Speaker of the House, Salvatore DiMasi, has been a strong opponent of casino gambling, Governor... Tried to get a Bill passed regarding casino gambling last year. / By Terry Goodwin / January 16, 2009

New Hampshire slots unlikely this session

NH - The New Hampshire House Speaker said she doubted that there were sufficient votes to pass expanded gambling in that state. / by Ray Poirier / January 13, 2009

New York senator proposes video slot expansion

NY - The proposal comes as lawmakers are looking for new sources of revenue and Gov. David Paterson's executive budget includes a $698 million cut in education funding to help close a projected $12 billion deficit over the next two years. / Associated Press / By VALERIE BAUMAN / 01.15.09

Obama Asks What Americans Want: Legal Online Poker!

- On, the official web site of Barrack Obama, the US President-elect has asked Americans to voice what changes they wish to see in the coming administration. Ranking #2 on the list is a call for regulation of legal online poker. There is also a button to vote Yes or No to the idea of the US legalizing online poker. / / January 16, 2009

Ohio Democrat says he's open to casino discussions

OH - The new speaker of the Ohio House says he is willing to consider casino gambling as a way to increase state revenue. / Associated Press / 01.13.09

Ohio gambling proponents offer another gambling plan

OH - "For the third time in four years, gambling proponents... Will roll the dice on legalizing casinos in Ohio. "Gov. And... Legislative... Say they are keeping an open mind on expanded gambling because of the state's budget crisis and high jobless rates... / 13 January 2009

Ohio governor: No gambling funds in budget

OH - "Gov. Ted Strickland told reporters he hopes the... Budget can be developed without turning to expanded taxes or gambling... / 16 January 2009

Once Again, The Subject Is Slots

MD - The subject of the first bill of the Prince George's County Council's 2009 legislative session deals with the same issue that dominated the 2008 General Assembly session: slot machines. In November, Maryland voters approved a ballot measure by a nearly 3-2 ratio to change the state constitution to allow slot machine gambling. / Washington Post / By Ovetta Wiggins and Nelson Hernandez / January 15, 2009

Pa. House speaker sees tough budget choices ahead

PA - Speaker Keith R. McCall said the state's tight finances will limit the Legislature's ability to address such Democratic priorities as expanding health coverage for the uninsured. He threw cold water on proposals to expand the state's casinos to allow table games such as blackjack and poker, saying such a decision on the matter should not be made until all of the facilities authorized by the 2004 slots law are up and running. / Associated Press / By MARK SCOLFORO / 01.14.09

Panel backs dogfighting bill

WY - A bill that would bring Wyoming in line with 48 other states that consider dogfighting a felony won unanimous support from a legislative committee... Committee voted 9-0 to support the bill, which was amended to make dogfighting a felony on first offense. Stalling described her experience participating in a dogfighting sting several years ago in California that she said "changed her life." In addition to the spectacle of dogs trying to kill each other in the ring, the event included prostitutes, illegal gambling, drugs and other illicit behavior, she said. / Star-Tribune capital bureau / By JARED MILLER / January 12, 2009

Pennsylvania Judge Rules Poker is a Game of Skill

PA - In a ruling handed down by Pennsylvania Judge Thomas A. James Jr. in Columbia County on Friday, it was ruled that Texas Hold'em is a game of skill and therefore not gambling under state law. The ruling sets an "excellent bar" for future poker litigation, according to Poker Players Alliance (PPA) Executive Director John Pappas. / POKER NEWS DAILY / By Dan Cypra / January 17, 2009

Plans for New Atlantic City Casinos Folded Like House of Cards

NJ - No one wants to admit it, but the city's wished-for comeback is being given up for dead. Developers are dropping projects faster than you can say urban blight. Blame the economy, the new slots in nearby states, the smoking laws, the Tropicana debacle, / By Brian Chan / January 12, 2009

Playboy Online Casino Saying Goodbye To Customers On January 29th

- Playboy gaming has now admitted that Playboy Poker will be shut down for good on January 29th of this year. Playboy Poker has not done the expected business since they opened in 2007. The current economy could has had an effect on their decision to shut down operations. / By Larry Rutherford / January 15, 2009

Players try to vote poker onto Obama agenda

- Online poker players and poker supporters in general now have a chance to get their thoughts on legalizing online poker onto President-Elect Barack Obama's radar. The section [Obama's Web site,] is called the Citizen's Briefing Book, and gives people a place to submit their ideas for Obama to focus on as well as to vote on the ideas already there that they agree with. Already suggested on the site is the legalization and regulation of online poker. / By Sarah Polson / Jan. 15, 2009

Pol betting on casinos to ea$e Pike burdens

MA - A top Beacon Hill lawmaker is hoping two resort-style casinos could bail out the struggling Turnpike Authority and possibly avoid a toll hike by developing one of the cash cows on state-owned land. Rep. Martin Walsh (D-Boston) signed onto yet another bill being filed today, similar to Patrick's, that would legalize three casinos with revenues going to local aid and substance abuse programs. / Hillary Chabot / January 14, 2009

Pressure builds for smoke-free casinos

- An organization of lawmakers representing 13 states has called for 100 percent smoke-free U.S. casinos. Missouri is not a member of the voluntary and educational organization for state lawmakers. Kansas is a member, NCLGS supports state legislators' efforts-to protect worker and patron health-to... - encourage 100 percent smoke-free gaming venues... - encourage negotiations with sovereign tribal nations to create 100 percent smoke-free gaming facilities... - encourage negotiations in support of provisions for 100 percent smoke-free gaming venues within tribal-state compact agreements and for renewals and extensions of such compact agreements... / by Rick Alm / January 14, 2009

Proposal To Take Casino Underground In Atlanta In Works

GA - Underground Atlanta has been struggling for some time now and developers of the entertainment center downtown believe they have the answer to turn things around. The developers are teaming with a Delaware based company to try and bring casino gambling to Georgia. / By April Gardner / January 14, 2009

Proposals on gaming get serious

GA - A state legislator wants to offer full-fledged casinos statewide. Rep. Roger Bruce (D-Atlanta) said Friday he plans to introduce legislation in the General Assembly next week that would allow voters to decide whether they want to bring gambling to their individual counties. House Speaker... Burkhalter (R-Johns Creek) said last month most lawmakers in the Republican majority don't support changing the state's constitution to allow gambling. / The Atlanta Journal-Constitution / By Leon Stafford, Rachel Tobin Ramos / January 17, 2009

Prosecutor wins millions from Neal

IN - Special Prosecutor Kit Crane has obtained a court judgment awarding him possession of video gambling defendant John Neal's rural Yorktown house, $1.7 million in cash, 19 cars and trucks, 21 taverns, a checking account and other assets. Special Judge Steven Nation ruled that Neal headed a criminal enterprise that operated in the taverns and generated millions of dollars from video gambling machines known as Cherry Masters. In 2000, Neal, a retired Indiana Teamster boss, pleaded guilty in federal court to operating an illegal gambling business, conspiring to defraud the IRS and money laundering, / By SETH SLABAUGH / January 17, 2009

Report: Smoky Ind. casino air fails EPA standards

IN - Air quality inside Indiana casinos is far worse than federal standards deem healthy, even in non-smoking gambling areas, according to a new study by anti-smoking advocates and researchers from Purdue University. Opponents of a statewide smoking ban - including the Casino Association of Indiana - say the proposal would slash casino revenues and could put hundreds of people out of work. Rep. Charlie Brown, D-Gary, plans to introduce a bill that would ban smoking in public places statewide with no exemptions. / Associated Press / By DEANNA MARTIN / 01.14.09

Rescue package in works to save casino jobs

NJ - With casinos mired in their worst slump ever, local leaders are discussing the possibility of regulatory reforms and new legislation to help the gaming industry cope with the recession. Whelan ruled out the possibility of a tax cut for casinos, noting that New Jersey's state budget crisis wo uld make that unrealistic. But he did say that some type of regulatory relief or new legislation would likely be major parts of the economic plan. One possibility is changing the regulations of the state Department of Environmental Protection and state Department of Community Affairs to stimulate construction projects and jobs, he said. Casinos trimmed their employment last year by 5.4 percent, to 38,585 workers, the lowest number since the late 1980s. / By DONALD WITTKOWSKI / January 16, 2009

Research firm expects further declines in gaming market

- IBIS World, a market research analysis firm, has forecasted an 8.4 percent decline in nationwide hotel-casino revenue by December 2009 as unemployment figures continue to rise. / By Amanda Finnegan / Jan 15, 2009

Road to Bethlehem Casino Claims Family-Owned Diner

PA - The state came in and bordered up the place so they could make a road to the new Sand's casino. Several Southside properties in Bethlehem, Pa. have been forced to board up after an eminent domain claims. $250,000 offer for the diner... Same amount... They bought two decades ago. / / By Stacey Weaver / 1-14-09

Rotterdam men arrested in illegal gambling operation

NY - Two Rotterdam men have been arrested for allegedly operating an illegal sports gambling operation... / CBS 6 News / January 13, 2009

School principal loses his job after staff beach retreat with drinking, gambling

WA - A Tacoma middle school principal resigned his position and was rehired as a substitute teacher last week after an investigation found he used poor judgment in hosting an off-campus beach weekend for some staff members. He told district leaders he invited a select group of staff members to the beach house to form a plan to improve the school's special-education services. But he eventually admitted that the meeting quickly turned into a social gathering and that no real business took place, records show. Weekend activities included a "drinking" poker game, movie watching and a trip to a casino for dinner, dancing and gambling. / KRIS SHERMAN / January 11th, 2009

Sebelius writes off southern casino hopes

KS - Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius apparently doesn't have much hope a casino developer will emerge in the state's southeast gaming zone. Kansas Lottery officials earlier this week confirmed that no applicant had yet filed the required paperwork in the southeast zone second round. / by Rick Alm / January 13, 2009

Sheriff's sergeant's wife accused of embezzlement pleads not guilty

CA - A Merced County sheriff's sergeant's wife accused of embezzling $832,000 from a nut processing plant has pleaded not guilty. Sziraki is the wife of Sgt. Steve Sziraki, who leads the department's Sheriff's Tactical and Reconnaissance (STAR) team. When that manager returned around March 2007, however, he began to question some of the purchases Sziraki had made with the company's credit and debit cards -- particularly purchases and cash withdrawals made at local Indian gambling casinos. / Merced Sun-Star / By VICTOR A. PATTON / Jan. 13, 2009

Six State Agencies Assist in Gambling Bust That Nets Three Arrests

TX - The illegal gambling was taking place at the Toot-N-Totum, and it is estimated that up to 100 people were playing the illegal eight liner slots on some nights. The largest illegal slot gambling operation in Amarillo. / By Terry Goodwin / January 13, 2009

Slot machine revenue down at 2 Conn. casinos

CT - / Associated Press / 01.16.09

Slot-machine winnings drop at three area casinos

CT - Last month's slot-machine winnings at Foxwoods Resort Casino and MGM Grand at Foxwoods declined by 19.3 percent... / By Brian Hallenbeck / 1/15/2009

State Republican leader opposes Iowa lottery lease

IA - The Iowa Senate's Republican leader on Friday criticized a proposal to lease the state lottery, calling it "a sign of desperation" that makes no sense from a business perspective. "It's a little like the family that three or four years ago bought more house than they can afford and now they're having to sell the furniture," McKinley said. "Why would the state sell one of the few revenue-producing assets that we own?" / Associated Press / By MIKE GLOVER / 01.16.09

Study says horse racing increases amount of gambling at casino

IA - The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission heard from a Kentucky consultant Thursday who has studied the impact of the horse racing industry on the state. The study by Richard Thalheimer was requested by the horse industry in the ongoing debate on whether slot machine revenues from the state's only horse track are being properly spent in subsidizing horse racing in Altoona. / By Darwin Danielson / January 16, 2009

Study: Casino air is 14 times smokier than outdoors

IN - Indiana's casino workers and customers breathe air containing 14 times more secondhand smoke than the air outside, a Purdue University study has found. The study, released by the Indiana Campaign for Smokefree Air and the Indiana Academy of Family Physicians, comes as the legislature reconsiders a smoke-free workplace law. A similar bill did not make it to the floor last year. Public health experts say that second-hand smoke can increase the risk of stroke by 50 percent and raise one's chance of sudden cardiac death, lung cancer and other conditions. / By Shari Rudavsky / January 14, 2009

Sycuan bingo machines modified for law

CA - Nevada-style gambling, including slot machines, is only allowed on Indian reservations in California, and only when tribes reach deals called compacts with the governor. Bingo is allowed on any Indian reservation that has a proper gaming ordinance, and it is not covered by compacts. Many tribes have installed machines that look like slots but are based on bingo. / Union-Tribune / By Onell R. Soto / January 13, 2009

The roll of the dice

NJ - It was an addiction that caused a Lyndhurst resident, lawyer and decorated ex-fire chief to divert millions in funds meant for clients' real estate closing transactions to use instead for gambling in Atlantic City. Officials say the $4 million was spent mostly on slot machines throughout eight casinos in New Jersey's gambling capital. "We see people sitting in Atlantic City for two days straight without even getting up to go to the bathroom, they'd rather soil themselves then leave," Alfano... Contends the casinos themselves played a big part in continuing his addiction. Casinos' comps for Rumore's habitual gambling included limo service from his home in Lyndhurst to Atlantic City and some even showered him with free gifts such as watches. / by Michael Lamendola / January 14, 2009

U.S. states losing bets on casinos, other gambling

- Industry revenues reached $91 billion in 2006, But with the U.S. economy in a year-long recession and consumers hoarding cash should hard times continue, casinos may no longer prove cash cows for state coffers -- as Kansas can attest. Private casino developers such as Penn National Gaming, LLC, and International Speedway Corp have dropped their plans for three out of the four casino sites, citing ailing economic conditions... In Illinois, officials had planned on pulling in $575 million from the sale of the state's long-dormant 10th casino license to help balance its fiscal 2009 budget, which is at least $2 billion in the red. The Illinois Gaming Board last month tapped the lowest bidder, Midwest Gaming & Entertainment LLC. It bid $125 million for a casino in the Chicago suburb of Des Plaines, along with a pledge of $10 million annually over 30 years. / Thomson Financial News / By Karen Pierog and Jim Christie / 01.15.09

Tracking the recession; Gambling revived

- The recession is so dire that elected officials in some states are dropping their long-standing opposition to gambling and considering ways to expand gaming or allow it for the first time. In the past week, the governors of Hawaii and Ohio said they would consider changing their minds to permit certain types of gambling in their states. Wyoming's governor said he would support the state's first lottery. Two Nebraska lawmakers proposed allowing up to 3,500 slot machines at racetracks. Maine's gaming board is reviewing a plan to allow Sunday morning hours at the state's only gaming facility. Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland (D) also is reconsidering his opposition to casino gambling. Kentucky and Pennsylvania officials also are weighing various gambling expansions this year. Some states, such as Indiana, are discussing privatizing their lottery. Lawmakers "see it as a voluntary tax because not everyone chooses to do it," said Keith Whyte, executive director of the National Council of Problem Gambling... / / By Stephen C. Fehr / January 17, 2009

Another tribe's casino plan axed

WI - For the second time in a week President Bush's interior officials rejected an off-reservation casino for Wisconsin. Too far away from the reservations of the sponsoring tribes, / by Brian Moon / January 14, 2009

Tribes want more American Indians on federal bench

CA - Leaders of California's politically powerful Indian tribes are pressing the incoming Obama administration to appoint more American Indians to the federal judiciary. The tribes rank among the state's biggest donors to campaigns, and Milanovich's tribe has given the maximum $50,000 to Obama's inaugural committee. / Associated Press / By MICHAEL R. BLOOD / Jan. 15, 2009

Tropicana Entertainment files reorganization plan

- Tropicana filed for Chapter 11 protection in U.S. Bankruptcy Court... Tropicana has been trying to restructure part of the $3 billion debt load, which stems largely from its $2.1 billion buyout of Aztar Corp. in 2007. Financial problems began after the company lost its license to operate the Tropicana Atlantic City and the economy slumped. / Associated Press / 01.13.09

Trump: I want Foxwoods' casino license

PA - Trump still has an option to buy a piece of the former Budd Co. plant in Nicetown, where he planned to build his casino with a group of local investors... Trump sued the Gaming Control Board last month in federal court, claiming he had been improperly denied a license because he owned casinos in Atlantic City. / Philadelphia Daily News / By CHRIS BRENNAN / Jan. 16, 2009

U.S. judge will hold hearing on Oneida trust ruling

NY - A judge has agreed to hear a challenge to the federal government's decision to take 18 acres of upstate New York land into trust for the Oneida Indian Nation. Federal officials say there was no need to notify anyone because the law requires putting excess military land on Indian reservations into trust for the tribe. / Observer-Dispatch / Jan 16, 2009

U.S. states losing bets on casinos, other gambling

- But with the U.S. economy in a year-long recession and consumers hoarding cash should hard times continue, casinos may no longer prove cash cows for state coffers -- as Kansas can attest. Now nearly two years later, private casino developers such as Penn National Gaming, LLC, and International Speedway Corp have dropped their plans for three out of the four casino sites, citing ailing economic conditions world wide. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger early in his administration touted tribal casinos as an important source of new revenue for the state government. Today, however, tribal leaders fear hard times are in store for their casinos. 'Tribal casinos and other casinos nationwide are experiencing a lot of issues with relation to the pullback in consumer spending,' said Jason Dickerson, gambling policy analyst at the California Legislative Analyst's Office. / Thomson Financial News / By Karen Pierog and Jim Christie / 01.15.09

Underground casino plan ups the ante Redevelopment proposal unveiled: Downtown attraction would offer 5,000 video lottery terminals, hotel, new restaurants.

GA - Underground Atlanta is ready to roll the dice. While the idea of a downtown casino has been kicked around for years, this is the first concrete plan brought forward by a developer and presented to the institution that can make it a reality. State law prohibits Las Vegas-style casinos with card games like poker. But the lottery's charter does not expressly prohibit video lottery terminals. The terminals look like slot machines, but operate like scratch-off tickets that the lottery already sells, such as "Slots of luck" and "Hold 'em poker." / The Atlanta Journal-Constitution / By Rachel Tobin Ramos, Leon Stafford / January 14, 2009

Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act.

- Democratic Party Representative... Nadler, took the precaution of reintroducing the Midnight Rule Act to a Congress newly returned to the Capitol after the holiday season. The Act enables an incoming president and his administration to reconsider and if necessary overturn any regulatory changes made by the previous administration within three months of the change of power. / 1-15-09

Update: Judge rules Neal must forfeit cash, bars, property

IN - A judge signed a ruling Wednesday that alleged gambling ring organizer John L. Neal [71] must forfeit to the state all property connected to the purported criminal enterprise. "(It) is clear that as the (federal) court found previously, ... Neal's array of bars, gambling devices, amusements and various agents for the operation thereof constituted a criminal enterprise as that term is defined by statute. (The state's) proof that gambling was the real point of Neal's business was factually uncontroverted by any defendant. The pool tables, amusement games and other pieces to the enterprise were a mere sham and an obvious front for the real goal, that of the reaping of millions of dollars in illegal gambling proceeds. / Herald Bulletin / By Shawn McGrath / January 15, 2009

Vegas venue raises eyebrows for Knight-Packer show

- Former CBS analyst Billy Packer, speaking from a podium at the Wynn Las Vegas Resort Monday, will join legendary coach Bob Knight in a series of one-hour TV programs focusing on the NCAA Tournament. What's raising eyebrows is the planned setting for their Survive and Advance series: the Wynn Las Vegas resort in the heart of Las Vegas Strip. It sends the message to (college) kids it's OK to do this," complains Arnie Wexler, a recovering compulsive gambler who runs a gambling hotline. "They're setting themselves up for a scandal. Who knows how many college students are going to bet on these games? I'm sure some athletes will bet too. What kind of message are we sending by running a show like this? The whole thing is sick." Keith Whyte, executive director of the National Council on Problem Gambling, says the show flies in the face of the NCAA's anti-gambling stance. / USA TODAY / By Michael McCarthy / 1/14/2009

What is the Future of Online Poker?

- The regulations of the UIGEA will go into effect on January 19th, one day before President-elect Barack Obama takes office. Despite a deflated economy, the Bush Administration pushed the regulations through as part of "midnight rule-making." "It may be harder to move money in and out of player accounts. It may take more than one option for being able to fund accounts. It may take longer for operators to get winnings to players when they cash out. Compliance by the financial services industry, which includes banks and credit card operators, is required by December 1st, 2009. Recently, Party Gaming Co-Founder Anurag Dikshit, who still owns a 27% stake in the parent company of PartyPoker, admitted to violating the Wire Act of 1961. He agreed to fork over $300 million and may face up to two years in jail, / By Dan / Jan 14 2009

Woman sentenced for dumbbell attack on husband

WI - [Valentina} Grenader, 46, had been charged with attempted first-degree intentional homicide, strangulation and suffocation, and substantial battery. She said she had a gambling problem and told him that she had lost $800 at a casino. He was yelling so loud, she said, that she wanted to quiet him so they could talk about her problem, the complaint says. / Journal Sentinel / By Mike Johnson / Jan. 16, 2009