Regulating Lotteries and Casinos
Until recently, legalized gambling spread across the states rapidly. Seen as an effective way to create jobs, promote economic development, help community revitalization, expand tourism, and raise state and local revenues, legislatures in all but two states (Hawaii and Utah) passed laws allowing a variety of gaming activity. During the past few years, however, legislators and voters in many states have been reluctant to legalize more games, and, as a result, most legislative efforts have been defeated either in legislative chambers or by referenda. In 1996, for example, only one gambling bill passed, and in 1997, although gambling was a legislative issue in 23 states, gambling bills were defeated in 14 states. In states such as Iowa, Louisiana, South Carolina and West Virginia, which have legalized gambling, voters have been reluctant to repeal it.
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The charts associated with this article can be found on the table of contents page for Chapter 11 of the 2000-2001 Book of the States.