After being discussed for several years now, gambling expansion in Georgia has turned into one of the state’s hottest topics that are expected to come up during 2020’s legislative session.
For the time being, there is no piece of legislation under which a casino, sports betting and horse racing expansion are allowed. However, Hampton-based Atlanta Motor Speedway has come up with a plan that its workers hope to provoke the interest of both lawmakers and local voters.
In October 2019, the above-mentioned speedway has unveiled an idea to open a destination resort to complement the existing race track that it already owns. The resort would also feature a casino venue and a hotel, but other attractions apart from gambling are also set to be offered, including a night club, a concert venue and a large water park.
As explained by Ed Clark, the president of Atlanta Motor Speedway, the casino and hotel resort would not be all about gambling and would be a family-friendly destination too. According to him, a great variety of activities would mean that customers could even not visit the casino.
At the time when the project was unveiled, it was worth $1 billion. According to initial expectations, it could create about 3,000 construction jobs and 5,000 permanent jobs.
The Addition of Casino Gambling Is Subject to Constitutional Ammendment
The only problem is that casino gambling is currently not legal on the territory of Georgia. However, a public hearing is set to be held today at Atlanta Motor Speedway to discuss a possible constitutional amendment regarding casino gambling, horse racing and sports betting addition to the legal gambling landscape in the state.
Local voters would have to make a decision whether or not gambling should be expanded, with proponents of the casino project being optimistic for the future of the proposed venue. As mentioned above, if a gambling expansion is really given the green light in Georgia, the project could be worth $1 billion.
The supporters of the casino resort also highlight the fact that the addition of such a venue, along with the overall expansion of the gambling sector in Georgia would bring additional revenue to the state. This money, on the other hand, could be redirected to various initiatives and educational programs, just like what is currently happening with the revenue generated by the Georgia Lottery.
In spite of the benefits that casino expansion proponents believe the gambling venue addition would have, Atlanta Motor Speedways is aware of the fact that the actual construction of the project is unlikely to start any time soon. After all, Georgian legislators would have to first give their approval to the above-mentioned Constitutional Amendment, and then, state residents would have to say yes to the construction of a casino resort.