Texas considers going after Louisiana’s gambling take.

Louisiana has been happily taking money from Texas gamblers since the 1990’s. 

Texas lawmakers proposed establishing up to 12 destination casinos across the state. These will include retail, meeting and entertainment venues which will make them serious contenders in the convention/entertainment market. The measure also would allow slot machines as well as horse and dog racing tracks in Texas, along with casino gambling on Indian reservations.

Texas is realizing many gamblers leave the state and take their money with them. It is more beneficial to the economy if funds remain in-state, the same sort of argument that led to slot machine legalization in several other states. 

Estimates are that 12 state-licensed casinos would create $3 billion to $4.5 billion per year in state and local tax money. According to the American Gaming Association, casinos in the 12 states where they are legal, pulled in $5.8 billion in taxes. 

Although the recession might increase the appeal of legalizing casinos in Texas, the economic downturn is causing decreased profits across the industry. However, keeping those remaining discretional funds circulating at home is far more attractive than the alternative of letting those dollars go out-of-state. 

Whether Texas will become a gambling state remains to be seen. However, if Texas does legalize it, Louisiana is sure to suffer decreased gambling and tax