The New Hampshire Senate voted Feb. 18 to table a bill authorizing one casino to be located at Rockingham Park, dealing yet another blow to hopes for the revitalization of the track and the return of live Thoroughbred racing.
The New Hampshire House of Representatives, which has defeated every casino gambling bill brought to the floor over the past few decades, held true to form April 29 and voted down legislation to allow two casinos.
The New Hampshire House of Representatives said no dice to casino gambling again May 7, handing supporters their third defeat in two months and dashing hopes that live Thoroughbred racing might return to Rockingham Park.
Though a measure to expand gambling in New Hampshire and open the door to the possible return of live racing at Rockingham Park failed in the state legislature in May, the prime sponsor of the bill said he will try again.
The New Hampshire House subcommittee studying expanded gambling narrowly voted May 15 to recommend that the bill to allow one high-end, highly-regulated destination casino be killed, but the full House will have its say.
Testimony on legislation that would authorize casino gambling in New Hampshire began April 16.
Even if Rockingham Park were to win a casino license, a return of live Thoroughbred racing isn't guaranteed. It does remain part of the plan, said an official with a company that would pursue a license if gaming is legalized.
New Hampshire moved closer to the expansion of gambling when a House of Representatives committee advanced a bill calling for two casinos with a combined 10,000 slot machines and table games.
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