- Pope Francis wins another ‘Person of the Year’ — from gay rights magazine
- Rep. Steve Stockman: Give my campaign $10, and you’ll get an Obama barf bag
- Putin: Russia to buy $15 billion in Ukraine bonds
- Expert: Obamacare ‘death spiral’ fears exaggerated
- Alabama firefighters dig for survivors of apartment blast
- Big Sur wildfire destroys home of firefighting chief
- ‘ ’Twas the Night Before Christmas’ set for mock trial to argue authorship
- Angela Merkel’s third term as Germany’s chancellor to be marked by move to left
- Mega Millions entices with record-setting jackpot: Half a billion so far
- Dennis Rodman heads to North Korea — despite execution, political purge
P.G. seeks casino at National Harbor
Rosecroft tagged as alternative site
ANNAPOLIS — Prince George’s lawmakers testified Wednesday before a Senate committee on a bill to bring slots and table games to the county, including a proposal to put a $1 billion casino at National Harbor.
“It’s already a regional destination drawing tourists from all over the country,” said Mr. Baker, who also estimated the proposed “high-end” casino would bring $50 million annually to the county.
Opponents of the plan, including state lawmakers, complained the project will take money from residents and has been unfairly moved ahead of the Rosecroft proposal.
The bill, which does not designate a site, would legalize table games at the state’s five other slots sites, provided that voters approve the bill in a referendum.
Maryland now has slots casinos open in Cecil and Worcester counties, with a third scheduled to open this year in Anne Arundel County. Two more sites in Baltimore and Allegany counties are still in the planning stage.
Voters approved the casinos in a 2008 referendum, but many lawmakers are now looking to expand to table games or add an additional site to keep up with neighboring casinos in Delaware, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.
Prince George’s officials have warmed to gaming in recent years since widely opposing the 2008 implementation of slots, which critics argued would exacerbate residents’ financial problems by draining their money and moving it into state coffers.
Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller Jr. said that National Harbor is an ideal location because most of its visitors come from out of state. He added that building a casino there would create thousands of construction and long-term jobs and that revenue would lessen the state’s tax burden on residents.
Supporters also contend that National Harbor already has the entertainment venues and road infrastructure to attract and accommodate visitors.
“It’s going to be the largest construction job on the East Coast,” said Mr. Miller, Prince George’s Democrat. “It’s an economic boomlet for Prince George’s County.”
Supporters of expanded gambling are moving briskly because additional sites or forms of gambling would have to be approved by a three-fifths majority in the General Assembly and upheld in a statewide referendum.
A successful bill this session would go to the ballot in November. But if lawmakers have to wait until next year, the earliest possible vote would be November 2014.
Sen. C. Anthony Muse, Prince George’s Democrat, argued the process is being pushed along too quickly and without adequate planning or input from local residents.
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
David Hill joined The Washington Times in February 2011 as a Maryland political reporter. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Md. drivers could face eventual doubling of gas tax
- Federal appeals court restores Maryland's concealed carry law
- Md. bill would end student suspensions for mimicking gun behavior
- Maryland Senate passes bill decriminalizing small amounts of marijuana
- Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell assailed on transportation
Latest Blog Entries
By John R. Bolton
The president fiddles at his domestic altar while the world burns
- PRUDEN: The scam that will not die
- BOLTON: Nero in the White House
- Robert E. Lee and 'Stonewall' Jackson tributes face Army War College removal
- Wasted: Tom Coburn's 'Wastebook targets 70 days in bed, Facebook
- Embassy Row: India strikes back over diplomat's arrest
- Zadzooks: The Joker sixth scale figure review (Sideshow Collectibles)
- U.S. pilot scares off Iranians with 'Top Gun'-worthy stunt: 'You really ought to go home'
- Colorado revolt: 55 of 62 sheriffs refuse to enforce new gun laws
- Army to cut up to 4,000 captains and majors
- U.S. downplays Saudi prince's criticism of Obama's Middle East policies
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Television commentary, reviews, news and nonstop DVR catch-up by Lisa King Dolloff and friends.
Wall Street news for retail investors who want to know what's going on.
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.
Extraordinary day at Redskins Park
White House pets gone wild!
Let it snow