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Texas lawmaker aims to bring video gaming to state

GamblingGambling: Texas lawmaker aims to bring video gaming to state

Includes video report

Texas state senator Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa has filed legislation that would legalize video lottery games, a form of slot machine, in Texas.

Senator Hinojosa believes Texas is facing a large deficit, and video gaming slot machines would add an extra boost to economy.

"We know by allowing slot machine at race tracks it will raise close to two billion dollars biennium", said Hinojosa.

Along with the extra revenue, the Senator says the proposed legislation will bring jobs.

"This type of legislation would create more than 77,000 new jobs in Texas", said Hinojosa.

Currently there are 13 licensed racetracks in the state of Texas, including two in the Valley.

Valley Race Park is located in Harlingen, and Tesoros Race Park is located in McAllen.

Tesoros is licensed, but construction is not yet complete.

"This would have a very positive impact because people would come and shop in McAllen, they'll use our mall, restaurants, and hotels", Hinojosa added.

(Story continues below.)


Brownsville Mayor Pat Ahumada opposes the legislation and says and if approved would only benefit the state and not individual cities.

Ahumada also adds cities would have to deal with any negative issues gambling may bring.

"Higher unemployment rate citizens from Brownsville will go to these sites and spend their money there instead of spending it in Brownsville, so it's going to hurt families it's going to hurt municipalities", said Ahumada.

Still, Senator Hinojosa says Texans are leaving the state to go and gamble in neighboring states like Nevada and Oklahoma, and this legislation, could keep Texans in Texas.

Andrea Young, President and Chief Operating Officer of Valley Race Park in Harlingen and Sam Houston Race Park in Houston, is naturally in favor of the bill.

"Most Texans realize by now that it is foolish to be sending billions of gaming dollars to our neighboring states every year when that money can be kept here," Young said. "If the legislature allows Texans to decide this issue we will have the opportunity to bring new economic development to South Texas, along with tens of thousands of new jobs that are heading to Louisiana and Oklahoma as quickly as our tax dollars. Harlingen, specifically stands to gain a great deal if we are successful this session. Valley Race Park has the potential to be a world class destination and race track when this proposal becomes reality."

The proposed legislation could extend the gaming machines to coastal communities like South Padre Island.

A hearing and public comment on this legislation will take place later this week.

Action 4 News

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8 comments. Last comment 6 years ago by rdgrnr.
Page 1 of 1
mightwin's avatar - questns

United States
Member #103786
January 5, 2011
486 Posts
Posted: March 8, 2011, 7:09 pm - IP Logged

I think if people are leaving Texas to go gamble in other states, they are going for more than video gaming.

    joyjoy8's avatar - friends
    Houston Texas
    United States
    Member #371
    November 30, 2000
    587 Posts
    Posted: March 8, 2011, 9:53 pm - IP Logged

    I agree that it is time to legalize gambling in Texas, It would bring billions to this state. People are going to gamble anyways!. They do gamble , they go to Oklahoma and Lousiana daily. They spend thousands at the ***game rooms***. This would bring jobs and valuable tax dollars to our cities and

    in Galveston and Padre Island it would bring in millions or billions. For the low income people who gamble iin game rooms, they would have a legal casino syle venue that regulates the percentages and pay-out and would eliminate the machines that are set to seventy-five percent to the house.

    I say it's about time, hurry up.

      temptustoo's avatar - cat anm.gif
      United States
      Member #89197
      April 2, 2010
      2826 Posts
      Posted: March 8, 2011, 11:38 pm - IP Logged

      pretty sad that these states cannot make it without jumping into the gambling pool...

        butterflykt's avatar - Lottery-043.jpg

        United States
        Member #102743
        December 25, 2010
        108 Posts
        Posted: March 9, 2011, 8:59 am - IP Logged

        pretty sad that these states cannot make it without jumping into the gambling pool...

        I agree...but everybody wants a piece of the pie.

        All things are possible to those that believe!!!!!!Wink

          joshuacloak's avatar - Money Swim-uncle-scrooge-mcduck-35997717-677-518.jpg

          United States
          Member #32537
          February 12, 2006
          698 Posts
          Posted: March 9, 2011, 9:10 am - IP Logged

          i agree, what's sad is they need to Find more ways to take our money....

          am all for anyone  running their own video poker games,  even a  casino out of their homes even

          however the states Like to spend money, so they need to tax or have a monopoly set up over things like lottery video gaming lol


          thro the "77,000 new jobs" is just numbers out of their magic hat no doubt

          really? i don't even think their state lottery has 77k people working for them, onless their counting out of state jobs of whoever their instant games /other hardware supplyer's are LOL

          let alone leting some video gaming , these people are spinning so much, o that's right, they think they can count ever job in the city as their doing, thx to them putting more gaming options in, Wow do these people take credit for ever thing they Don't do or what

            bobby623's avatar - abstract
            San Angelo, Texas
            United States
            Member #1097
            January 31, 2003
            1405 Posts
            Posted: March 9, 2011, 9:41 am - IP Logged

            If my memory is correct, this idea has been offered several times in the past, but never adopted.

            The lawmarkers who are owned body and soul by the gambling industry are always looking for ways to improve "their"
            bottom lines under the guise of providing new jobs, etc.

            Texas is basically an anti-gambling state. We are lucky to have a lottery.

            There's no doubt that some Texas residents travel to neighboring states to gamble, but the numbers and the amount of money
            spent are greatly distorted.

            It's just a 'big lie' the gambling industry uses to win support.

            Texas is dealing with a budget shortfall, but expanding gambling isn't a solution.

              alsports2000's avatar - 23606770150900
              Pharr, Texas
              United States
              Member #107
              August 23, 2001
              442 Posts
              Posted: March 13, 2011, 8:02 pm - IP Logged

              First of all for all of you who oppose the introduction of casinos in TX, why don't you oppose to Lottery games, dog and horse racing, bingos, game rooms, etc.?  Why don't you all oppose the sale of cigarretts, alcoholic beverages that kill hundreds of innocent persons yearly??.  I agree with putting game rooms out of commission: reason?, the house edge is as high as 89.9% and they are NOT regulated by the state. Yes, hundred or thousands of Texans gamble in other states: Vegas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Eagle Pass, Texas. So, all of you who oppose to gambling casinos in Texas can oppose to paying taxes, oppose to pay for high gas prices, oppose to pay for rediculously high electric bills during summer months but you don't have the  right to decide for everyone on how to spend our hard earned money. If you think politicians are in it to make a profit, its always been that way and there is nothing you can do about it. I don't smoke or drink but do enjoy gambling and its the only thing I like to do. So, we only want to hear from persons who have a positive outlook on the introduction of casinos in Texas and if you don't like it, then don't gamble, stay at home and let us enjoy ourselves. Have a good day......

                rdgrnr's avatar - walt
                Way back up in them dadgum hills, son!
                United States
                Member #73904
                April 28, 2009
                14903 Posts
                Posted: March 14, 2011, 3:19 pm - IP Logged

                If I lived in Texas I'd welcome the video gaming.

                If government can raise revenue in creative ways to cover their reckless spending sprees I'd be all for it.

                I would even support the legalization of dope. Look at all the money that could be made there by taxing it. And look at all the money that could be saved in unnecessary law enforcement, legal, justice and incarceration expenses. It ain't like it's ever gonna stop dopers from doing dope anyway, anymore than prohibition stopped drinkers from drinking. What a colossal waste of time and resources the War on Drugs is. Not to mention the lives being lost south of the border in a virtual civil war between cartels and law enforcement and government and military just to keep dopers here supplied with illegal dope.

                I say if it's OK for me to catch a buzz off beer and booze then the dopers should be able to do the same with whatever they choose.

                There, I just gave the solution to the deficit and the national debt.

                (Sorry if dopers is an offensive term to some here, no offense, but I don't know what else to call you guys)

                So Texans should welcome the video games and any other means of income that don't require piling on more taxes to those who are already being bled dry.







                "The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing"

                                                                                                            --Edmund Burke