On November 7th, 2006, although most voters in Arkansas voted overwhelmingly in favor of the bingo and raffle amendment proposed by Rep. Shirley Borhauer of R-Bella Vista, it was only the first step to formally bringing the games to the state of Arkansas.
Even with the support of the voters of Arkansas in the amendment of the state's constitution to allow charities that have been in existence for about five years before amendment I, the Legislature of the state must first pass a law this coming winter to enable the start of the games.
Rep. Benny Petrus, who is on line to be the House Speaker next year, said that they are already planning to write laws that will enable the start of the charitable bingo and raffle gaming in the state as soon as possible. Although Arkansas can get a percentage of the earnings from charity bingo, Rep. Benny Petrus firmly believes that the legislators will not get that money as Arkansas will have a projected $721 million dollars surplus at the end of this year.
The Head of the Family Council Action Committee, Jerry Cox, said that with the fast tracked laws that are being formulated by the legislature, he fears that there would be enough loopholes left that the commercially managed gambling facilities and the Indian owned casinos could exploit in order to enter Arkansas.
Sunday, December 03, 2006