A two-piece package of new state gaming legislation has emerged from that Alabama House and passed Thursday through the House Committee for Economic Development and Tourism by narrow margins.
The bills, both sponsored by state Sen. Chip Brown, R-Hollinger’s Island, would create via constitutional amendment a state-run lottery with funds accumulated from the lottery funneled into three scholarship programs — with monies divided equally — for university going students. A portion of funds generated would also go to fund Future Farmers of America and certain retired educators.
The lottery would include Powerball and Mega Millions and would limit it to a paper lottery instead of an electronic lottery. A large difference is an exclusion of state casinos and sports bettings that the Senate’s proposed gaming legislation provides.
Sen. Greg Albritton, R-Atmore, has in recent weeks brought forward the Senate’s proposal for statewide gambling, which would include state-run casinos and provisions for sports betting. It would establish up to five casinos located in state dog racing tracks and two so-called “satellite casinos” in Houston and Lowndes counties. The bill’s future remains uncertain in the Senate.
Brown’s gambling legislation now moves to the Alabama House for consideration sometime after the Legislature’s week-long spring break.