Public hearings set for Monday on slew of bills to expand gaming
Published 12:31 PM EDT Apr 25, 2015
Don't spend on unhealthy habits: A night at the casino can occasionally bring you a win, but more often than not, it's the house that comes out ahead.
AUGUSTA, Maine —Lawmakers have long lamented that Maine's lack of a comprehensive gambling policy has allowed casino developers to write the rules and use the citizen initiative process to let voters decide their fate.
Yet, attempts to change that have never come to fruition.
A $150,000 report commissioned by the Legislature last year concluded that Maine has room for more casinos and provided a blueprint for establishing a competitive bidding process for granting licenses.
The report's findings are giving new hope to those who have promoted that idea for years as they begin to make another push next week.
But proposals to open the door to more gambling, which a legislative committee will consider Monday, will likely face continued opposition from casino operators in Bangor and Oxford.
They have warned that their businesses can't handle any more competition.
The Legislature's Veterans and Legal Affairs Committee will hold public hearings at 9 a.m. Monday on 10 gambling-related bills.
The bills include a proposal that would allow the Maliseet Indian tribe to build a casino on tribal-owned land in Aroostook County.