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Poker Legislation & PPA Discussion hosted by Rich Muny Discussions of various poker-related laws and steps players can take to push for better laws.

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Old 11-10-2018, 09:29 PM   #26
curtinsea
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Re: Proposition 3 and 13 Florida Ballot 2018

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Originally Posted by white_lytning View Post
Now, instead of having bills die at the legislature due to political issues and lobbyists an interested party just needs to worry about marketing. Out of state interests can get enough signatures to get something on a ballet and ask the voters to do essentially anything they want. They can sell it the same way this amendment was sold, as a way to raise money for schools or teachers or whatever, and put anything they want up to a vote.
The reality is working for legislatiion if far better than trying to do ballot measures ... ballot measures cost far more, and the risk of failure is no lower
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Old 11-11-2018, 09:55 AM   #27
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Re: Proposition 3 and 13 Florida Ballot 2018

Nice analysis, white_lytning!

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...but all-in-all amendment 13 is good for the poker rooms and poker players because most dog facilities were not making money on the dogs so they will theoretically have more money to re-invest in cards when they stop racing..."
Exactly! Plus, if the banked card games go away, much of those players and money will return to the live poker tables. In essence, there are ten facilities in Florida that will be converted to stand-alone poker rooms with some OTB, plus one that will be poker & slots.

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Amendment 3 is more of a wild card. If you are optimistic you can easily argue that it can open the flood gates for gaming in Florida (this is the position I think is most likely). Now, instead of having bills die at the legislature due to political issues and lobbyists an interested party just needs to worry about marketing. Out of state interests can get enough signatures to get something on a ballet and ask the voters to do essentially anything they want. They can sell it the same way this amendment was sold, as a way to raise money for schools or teachers or whatever, and put anything they want up to a vote. Destination resorts, sports betting, internet wagering, its really an open door.

The pessimistic view is the one that has been presented in this topic, in that its usually tough to get 60% to approve anything. I'm usually in this camp, but after what happened last week with all but one amendment passing and some passing with really crazy numbers, I don't think this is really true. I think it even less true when you have large gaming interests that can pump money into marketing.
While there is some advantage to eliminating the legislative path, the ballot amendment process is difficult at best and very expensive. Any gambling expansion amendment will probably take a minimum of $10M and probably more on the order of $25M to push through. It was surprising that all but one amendment this year passed. I speculate that a lot of voters had no real handle on what they were voting on, and simply figured that if it made it on the ballot then it was good - voted yes by default. I think a gambling expansion amendment would not be met with the same default thinking.

As to online poker, it is not clear if a ballot amendment would be required to authorize it in Florida. It depends how it would be classified under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. If it is simply classified as another form of Class II poker, then Florida Amendment 3 doesn't apply and a state legislative vote could authorize it. If instead it is classified as Class III gaming as an "electronic facsimile" of a game of chance, then a Florida voter referendum would be required under Amendment 3. That's a battle yet to be fought, and one that maybe now the race tracks will be willing to take on (they refused before, prioritizing authorization of slots throughout the state over online poker). Interestingly, licensed and regulated online poker in Florida would not violate the Seminole compact. The compact terms say that if online poker were authorized to anyone in the state, then the Seminoles can do it too and if it causes a threshold drop in Seminole casino revenues, the revenue-sharing to the state would be lowered proportionately as well. But that threshold would never be reached, imo.

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It makes sense that there will be a gaming bill in the legislature this year to try to clean up the GH racing and that might have some impact on the poker rooms. Amendment 3 seems to clearly outlaw the banked games the rooms are running but I don't see the industry going down without a fight on that. Its probably extremely profitable and when poker revenues are declining around the country it just makes sense to want to fight for the banked games.
Yeah, they'll probably fight it some. But they'll lose eventually. The Florida courts have already ruled that those banked games (as they are currently run, not true player-banked but rather an outside 'corporation' acting as the bank) violate the compact, and the state promised the Seminoles to crack down on them. Banked poker table games will no doubt be de-authorized by the state regulators in very short order, and now even any true player-banked version of them is illegal under Amendment 3. I wouldn't be surprised to see the legislature pass bill language making it clear that they are illegal, if the amendment language in itself isn't enough to do that.
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Old 11-12-2018, 04:22 AM   #28
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Re: Proposition 3 and 13 Florida Ballot 2018

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Originally Posted by PokerXanadu View Post
Exactly! Plus, if the banked card games go away, much of those players and money will return to the live poker tables. In essence, there are ten facilities in Florida that will be converted to stand-alone poker rooms with some OTB, plus one that will be poker & slots.
What percentage of cardroom revenue comes from poker vs non-poker? Is the split similar to LA, where I have read that a place like Commerce Casino gets 2/3 of its revenue from banked games rather than poker? If banked card games going away costs cardrooms half their revenue, how would that affect poker?
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Old 11-12-2018, 06:24 AM   #29
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Re: Proposition 3 and 13 Florida Ballot 2018

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What percentage of cardroom revenue comes from poker vs non-poker? Is the split similar to LA, where I have read that a place like Commerce Casino gets 2/3 of its revenue from banked games rather than poker? If banked card games going away costs cardrooms half their revenue, how would that affect poker?
Unknown. There's no public reporting of the revenues separately. However by law, the cardrooms can't provide the bank. The only revenues the cardrooms get from the banked games is the rake. Plus the banked games are relatively new (first one in Florida popped up in 2011 and they weren't sanctioned by the state regulators until 2014). Cumulative annual cardroom revenues across the state from all poker games other than tournaments is up less than 10% since 2011. So no matter what percent of the revenues currently come from rake on the banked games, it shouldn't be much of loss for the cardrooms as most of the players and action will return to the live poker games.

Last edited by PokerXanadu; 11-12-2018 at 09:46 AM.
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Old 11-12-2018, 07:20 AM   #30
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Re: Proposition 3 and 13 Florida Ballot 2018

Some time ago Nick Sortal (formerly a columnist for Sun Sentinel, Miami Herald and SouthFloridaGambling.com) reported that the management of Magic City told him that up to 20% of its poker room gross receipts were generated by the "player" banked games.
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Old 11-12-2018, 09:54 AM   #31
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Re: Proposition 3 and 13 Florida Ballot 2018

Also, by law the dog tracks have been required to put at least 4% of their gross poker revenues into their race purses. That will go away as an expense for the cardrooms.
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