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Supreme Courts Arguments over Slot Machine Determines the Fate of Jacksonville Referendum

Posted by Samantha A. on Tuesday, June 7, 2016


On, Tuesday the Florida Supreme Court heard many arguments in the case that will ultimately decide whether or not slot machines will actually be allowed inside the Jacksonville’s BestBet poker room.

Creek Entertainment Gretna is at the center of this case, they have been denied state permits for these slot machines although the voters of Gadsden County did approve a slot machine referendum in the year of 2012.  The state is arguing that this legislature did not ultimately intend for slot machines to be in Gadsden County, as the lower courts have upheld this position also.

On Tuesday the attorney that is representing Creek Entertainment Gretna also told the Supreme Court that a strict interpretation of these state laws does allow for slot machines to be authorized via referendum as long as there is an appropriate facility available.

There are a total of five other Counties that have approved very similar initiatives and they are waiting to see the outcome of this Creek Entertainment Gretna case.  The Jacksonville City Council has been requested to place the same question to the voters of Duval County on their ballot in November.

Jacksonville Greyhound Racing who is the owner of the BestBet facility that is located in Jacksonville’s Arlington neighborhood, is hoping that the court will rule in Creek Entertainment Gretna’s favor.  In addition to Duval County, Jacksonville Greyhound Racing also have a license for their facility located in St. Johns County that could be re-activated and request the voters of the county to approve slot machines also.

This Duval County referendum bill was actually filed by Aaron Bowman the Councilman in the month of May, and at this time it was referred to the Rules and Finance committees.  This bill could be up for approval as soon as June 28th, 2016.

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