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House of Delegates Approves Blackjack and Other Table Games

The House of Delegates finally approved the House Bill 2718 on February 16th. This bill will allow racetracks to offer blackjack, roulette and other table games.

Now heading for the Senate, House Bill 2718 will allow the 4 racetrack counties of Jefferson, Kanawha, Hancock, and Ohio to vote on allowing table games. The racetrack counties will then ask its district commission to add the question to the incoming primary.

A track can also ask for a special election, but if so it must shoulder the cost. In addition, after 5 years, the bill also permits a recall election.

The voting of 55-42 last Friday marks the first time that the chamber allowed race tracks to offer table games. Democrats hold a majority of 72 out of 100 seats, but most of them sided with the Republicans against the bill.

According to those in favor, blackjack and other table games will help provide more jobs and preserve the jobs linked to the video lottery machines that the racetrack is presently hosting.

Supporters of House Bill 2718 also created the bill declaring that blackjack, roulette and other table games are part of the intellectual property of the state.


Thursday, March 29 , 2007
Kim Watson