Lawmakers to Discuss Nevada Lottery Bill - 8 News NOW

Lawmakers to Discuss Nevada Lottery Bill

Posted: Updated:

LAS VEGAS - Whether you double down on blackjack, try to win millions on a slot machine or bet on your favorite sports team, gambling is everywhere in Nevada.

If you want to play a lottery in the Silver State, however, forget it. Nevada has had a law on the books outlawing lotteries since 1864.

Thousands of Nevadans, meanwhile, flock to California and Arizona whenever state lotteries build large jackpots. The same held true this week, as the Mega Millions jackpot eclipsed $300 million.

As the jackpot swells, so does a call for a lottery in the Silver State. Numerous attempts to create a lottery in Nevada have failed over the years.

"The voters in Nevada have shown broad support for it, but it has always died," said Assemblywoman Debbie Smith (Washoe-D).

Many Las Vegas residents who traveled to Arizona on Thursday to buy lottery tickets say they would support a lottery in Nevada.

"I'd love it. It'd be so much easier than to travel," Las Vegas resident Ronnie West said.

"A couple of bucks are worth the dream," said Las Vegas resident Jesse Chaidez.

"I'd buy tickets," Las Vegas resident Nadine Russo said.

The latest effort to create a state lottery, Senate Joint Resolution 1, is scheduled for a committee hearing March 29. The bill would require all lottery proceeds be distributed to Nevada school districts in a fair and equitable manner.

Read Senate Joint Resolution 1

The measure is sponsored on behalf of the Nevada Youth Legislature. "This bill does not establish a lottery. All this bill does is amend the state constitution to allow the Legislature to establish a lottery," said Nevada Youth Legislature Chairman Zhan Okuda-Lim.

Supporters say a lottery could pay off for our struggling schools. "I think a lottery would be a real viable option for bringing in additional revenue into the county and the state," said Clark County Education Association President Ruben Murillo.

The gaming industry opposes a state lottery, believing a dollar spent on a lottery ticket is a dollar not spent on the casino floor. The industry may have to lobby harder to kill the bill this session.

"I think, at this point, given our revenues, we're probably open to a lot of options that we weren't open to in 2009," said Assemblyman Pete Goicoechea (35th District-R).

When asked about the lottery measure, MGM Resorts said in a statement, "Our children's education should not be based on how many people play a lottery game each month. We need far more serious proposals to properly fund the state's real and growing needs."

A spokesperson for Boyd Gaming said the company continues to oppose a state lottery in Nevada. Caesars Entertainment could not be reached for comment. Representatives for Station Casinos and the Nevada Resort Association were unable to provide interviews.

SJR 1 must pass two legislative sessions before it goes before voters for final approval.

  • Las Vegas NewsLas Vegas NewsMore>>

  • BREAKING NEWS: "War Machine" back in Las Vegas

    BREAKING NEWS: "War Machine" back in Las Vegas

    Saturday, August 30 2014 1:01 PM EDT2014-08-30 17:01:13 GMT
    Jonathan KoppenhaverJonathan Koppenhaver
    Las Vegas-- The MMA fighter known as "War Machine" was booked around 8:00 a.m. Saturday morning into the Clark County Detention Center.Jonathan Koppenhaver is accused of beating up his former girlfriend Christine Mack earlier this month in a Las Vegas home, before fleeing to California. Mack suffered some broken bones and is recovering.Koppenhaver was arrested in Simi Valley, California, two weeks ago. He is expected to make his first court appearance on Wednesday.More>>
    Las Vegas-- The MMA fighter known as "War Machine" was booked around 8:00 a.m. Saturday morning into the Clark County Detention Center.Jonathan Koppenhaver is accused of beating up his former girlfriend Christine Mack earlier this month in a Las Vegas home, before fleeing to California. Mack suffered some broken bones and is recovering.Koppenhaver was arrested in Simi Valley, California, two weeks ago. He is expected to make his first court appearance on Wednesday.More>>
  • Radio troubles force Metro officers to ride 2 to a car

    Radio troubles force Metro officers to ride 2 to a car

    Friday, August 29 2014 6:40 PM EDT2014-08-29 22:40:55 GMT
    You may have noticed fewer police cars on the streets of Clark County, but according to Metro Police, it doesn't mean there are fewer officers.More>>
    You may have noticed fewer police cars on the streets of Clark County, but according to Metro Police, it doesn't mean there are fewer officers.More>>
  • Arizona defeats UNLV 58-13

    Arizona defeats UNLV 58-13

    Saturday, August 30 2014 12:57 PM EDT2014-08-30 16:57:08 GMT
    Tucson, AZ. – The Arizona Wildcats (1-0) defeated the U.N.L.V. Rebels (0-1) 41-7 in both teams season openers Friday night.Former Bishop Gorman High School standout Anu Solomon passed for 425 yards and four touchdowns for Arizona. More>>
    Tucson, AZ. – The Arizona Wildcats (1-0) defeated the U.N.L.V. Rebels (0-1) 41-7 in both teams season openers Friday night.Former Bishop Gorman High School standout Anu Solomon passed for 425 yards and four touchdowns for Arizona. More>>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KLAS. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.