May 17, 2023 – Gambling Lobbyists have pushed hard to get Texas open to casinos, but have been unsuccessful in convincing the legislative members to cast their votes before the session ends leaving the proposal unable to advance.
House Bill 2843, authored by Rep. John Kuempel, R-Seguin, would have allowed Texas to build casinos throughout the state and allow gambling within state line’s. Rep. John Kuempel has postponed the vote for his bill on Friday’s legislative session until November 29th, six months after legislation will have been closed.
Lawmakers are known to postpone Bills until after legislation ends rather than just killing them on the spot. Kuempel picked the November date for his late father’s birthday, Edmund Kuempel, a former state representative who was succeeded in office by his son and had also carried casino legislation.
Had the bill been passed, the Austin area would have received one of eight casinos that was to be built around Texas. Other areas that would have received a casino are: Houston and Dallas areas would have gotten two apiece, and San Antonio would have gotten one. Corpus Christi and McAllen also would’ve received one each. What would’ve been eight casinos would have been resort type casinos.
Stated in a testimony by economist George Zodrow, the resorts would’ve created 48,000 full-time equivalent jobs.
A related resolution by Rep. Charlie Geren, R-Fort Worth, would have allowed Texans to vote on whether to legalize casinos, however, just like Kuempel, Geren postponed the proposal until after the session ends.