After witnessing the massive revenue bumps that have been recorded by expanded gambling efforts in states like West Virginia and Pennsylvania, the state of Virginia is seriously considering upping its game in as far as gambling is concerned. This would be a historic reversal for the state which has been known to be only inclined to allow gambling activities that are related to horse racing.
Horse racing has been part of the culture in Virginia since the colonial days – as long as there has been horse breeding and horses racing in Virginia there has been gambling on the sport. Other than that, the Virginia General Assembly has never been interested in expanding gambling activities in the country – well, until now.
Anticipated Revenue Boost
One of the prime motivations of the state’s interest in more gambling activities is the economic shortfalls it has had to deal with in the recent past. Lawmakers in Virginia have become increasingly concerned that the much of the state’s economic potential is rooted in the federal government and not much else – it relies heavily on the federal government tax revenue and income which means that state will suffer in case the federal government pulls back in spending. As a matter of fact, the suffering has already begun as the state has been unable to make up some revenue shortfalls.
Now Virginia is one of the states that are considering whether or not to legalize sports betting following the recent May 2018 United State Supreme Court ruling that lifted the federal ban on sports betting. This is perhaps one of the issues that will be mulled over once the 45-day legislation session kicks off this month.
As it turns out, Virginia has the potential to have a very vibrant sports betting industry and this has been proven by the gambling industries of other states. Case in point, West Virginia which has already enacted sports betting is a popular destination for Virginians who want to places sports bets. The most popular sports book in West Virginia is located at the Hollywood Casino in Charles Town. It is, therefore, no surprise that all three sports betting proposals are from northern Virginia, the region where the effect of gamblers leaving the state to spend cash in Maryland and West Virginia is most evident. Despite the difference in the opinions between proponents of sports gambling in Virginia, one thing that they can all agree on is the fact that they do not want to see the state losing out on revenue.
If a sports gambling legislation passes, Virginia will take its place among the newest and most sought out casino destinations and the state can look forward to additional tax revenues.