New Hampshire is one step closer to authorizing casino gambling.
NH Senate passes casino bill
SB 242 passed by a 13-10 margin and now moves on to the House for consideration. A similar bill put forth by D’Allesandro in 2014 also passed the Senate. It fell short in the House by a single vote, 173-172.
D’Allesandro is confident he can whip the votes in the lower chamber this time around.
“While New Hampshire has done nothing, surrounding states now have gaming entities,” D’Allesandro told local press. “They advertise on our TV stations and we send buses of New Hampshire residents to those other states to gamble. It’s time for New Hampshire to do something. No state that has done this has crumbled.”
A peek inside SB 242
The New Hampshire casino bill uses a similar model to the one enacted in neighboring Massachusetts when it comes to approving casino proposals.
Local authorization would require a charter with the town, as well as a voter referendum — with a stipulation that a second vote can also be held at a later date if the referendum fails.
Licensing fees for casinos
SB 242 would create two categories of casino licenses, Category 1 and Category 2:
- A 10-year Category 1 license comes at a cost of $80 million and requires a minimum of 80 table games and 2,000 slot machines and a maximum of 160 table games and 3,500 slot machines. Renewal of a Category 1 casino license costs $1.5 million and is good for 10 years.
- A 10-year Category 2 license costs $40 million and requires a minimum of 25 table games and 750 slot machines and a maximum of 80 table games and 1,500 slot machines. Renewal of a Category 2 casino license also costs $1.5 million and is good for 10 years.
Tax rates on casinos
The tax rates would be set at 35 percent for slot machines and 18 percent for table games. The bill also earmarks tax revenue and funding for local communities and responsible gaming programs, with revenue allocated as follows:
- Three precent of the gaming licensee’s gross slot machine revenue to the host community;
- One percent of its gross slot machine revenue to the community or communities abutting the host community, divided equally if more than one, with limitations if a community abuts more than one host community;
- One percent of gross slot machine revenue to the county in which the host community is located;
- And one percent of the gross slot machine revenue to the Department of Health and Human Services to support programs relative to prevention and treatment of problem gambling.