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Virginia Lawmaker Pushes For Casinos

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A Virginia lawmaker is advocating for casinos to bring in more state revenue.
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A Virginia lawmaker is advocating for casinos to bring in more state revenue.

A Virginia lawmaker believes the Commonwealth should join neighboring states Maryland, Delaware, and West Virginia in building fully operational casinos.

Virginia Sen. Louise Lucas has already pre-filed a bill for the next General Assembly session to give residents time to weigh the idea. Lucas learned after visiting Maryland that after just two months, its newest casino raked in a lot of money.

"Of the $61million that they made, 67 percent of that goes to the state," she says.

And now Maryland is eyeing waterfront property at the National Harbor near the District for another casino. Lucas says Portsmouth has space for a similar. She rebuts those who question the morality of casino gambling.

"They're going to choose their own source of entertainment," she says. "Nobody's going to stop them. So since we know that, why can't we keep some of that money for our own state and our own localities?"

She adds that since the GOP doesn't want to impose new taxes, and interstate tolls are losing support, this may be the most viable option for funding roads and education, while offsetting the Portsmouth region's rising costs.

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