Press Release: ATOA asks Citizens to Call on their Legislators to Pass a Gaming & Lottery Bill in this Special Session

09.23.21: Montgomery, Alabama – The Alabama Track Owners Association (ATOA) continues to pursue the goal of passing a comprehensive gaming and lottery bill during this Special Session – currently focused exclusively on prisons and prison reform. Since the media campaign launched at the beginning of September, the citizens of Alabama have made thousands of calls per week to their Alabama State Legislators demanding the opportunity to vote on a constitutional amendment to approve a comprehensive gaming and lottery plan.

During the Regular Session, the Alabama State Senate passed a comprehensive gaming and lottery bill that would have consolidated, regulated, and taxed an education lottery, sports betting, and casino gaming. Unfortunately, the Alabama State House ran out of time during the Regular Session to complete their work on the Senate approved version of the constitutional amendment and enabling legislation.

The Special Session gives the Alabama State Legislature another opportunity to address this economic development initiative that will create over 10,000 new jobs in the State of Alabama and provide over $700 MM dollars of new tax revenue to fund Alabama priorities including education and trade school scholarships, rural broadband, healthcare, and discretionary funding for counties & municipalities.

Despite the thousands of calls that citizens of Alabama have made over the past few weeks, a comprehensive gaming and lottery bill is not currently on the agenda for this Special Session. In response, the ATOA will launch a new version of the “call your legislator” campaign creative and messaging on Thursday, September 23, 2021. The new commercials will include the following messages:

“On Monday, September 27th, Alabama State legislators will return to Montgomery for a special session on prison reform; and while they could pass a gaming and lottery bill at the same time, there’s no plan to do so. We’ve waited long enough. Alabama has lost enough. It’s time to let the people decide. Call your legislator today and tell them to pass a gaming and lottery bill in this special session; because every day they fail to act, we all lose.”

The ATOA is asking the citizens of Alabama to call their legislators and tell them to pass a comprehensive gaming and lottery bill during the Special Session. The toll-free phone number is 1-855-Gaming-1 (1-855-426-4641).

To view the commercial, please visit www.alabama4gaming.org.

About Alabama Track Owners Association (ATOA):

The ATOA is a non-profit organization with four charter members: Birmingham Race Course, Greenetrack Bingo & Racing, Mobile Greyhound Park, and VictoryLand. The ATOA believes the citizens of Alabama should have the opportunity to vote on a comprehensive gaming and lottery plan that creates, regulates, and taxes an education lottery, sports betting, and casino gaming. The comprehensive gaming and lottery plan, if approved by the voters via constitutional amendment, will  provide the State of Alabama with additional tax revenue to fund initiatives that will improve the quality of life for Alabama residents. For more information, please visit www.alabamatrackowners.org

ATOA Calls on Alabama Lawmakers to Address Gambling

09.03.21 – In this story, Erin Davis of WSFA 12 reports on the media campaign initiated by the Alabama Track Owners Association (ATOA). The introductory paragraph reads as follows: ” Gambling has been a hot topic in Alabama for years. Despite several attempts, Alabama lawmakers failed to pass a gambling proposal during this year’s legislative session. Now there’s a new public service announcement from the Alabama Track Owners Association. The goal is to get more people to talk about gambling.”

To read the full article and watch a video of the report, please click the link below: https://www.wsfa.com/2021/09/03/psa-calls-alabama-lawmakers-address-gambling/

Opinion: A Majority of Voters want Gambling, Lottery. There’s little opposition.

09.02.21 – In this opinion piece, Josh Moon of the Alabama Political Reporter provides perspective on the state of the comprehensive gaming and lottery plan. The essence of the opinion column is captured in the following quote: “We’re talking potentially around $1 billion annually to pay for college scholarships, broadband internet expansion, rural health care expansion and money for K-12 classrooms. The inability to get this done is, quite honestly, mind boggling.”

Alabama dog track owners launch gambling push – but familiar hurdles remain

09.01.21 – In the news report, Brenden Kirby of FOX10 news reports on the Alabama Track Owners Association (ATOA) media campaign. Key elements of the report’s message are contained in the following quote: “The Alabama legislative session does not even start for almost nine months. But Robert Kennedy Jr., a spokesman for the association’s efforts, told FOX10 news that he believes the matter could be included in an upcoming special session that will be needed to redraw the state’s political boundaries following the 2020 census.”

To read the article and watch the video report, please visit the website by clicking the link below: https://www.fox10tv.com/news/alabama/alabama-dog-track-owners-launch-gambling-push-but-familiar-hurdles-remain/article_0185e03c-0b77-11ec-9fcc-17696b73ab05.html

Press Release: Alabama Track Owners Association Launches Statewide Media Campaign

09.01.21 – Montgomery, Alabama – The Alabama Track Owners Association (ATOA) has launched a statewide media campaign to communicate the following message directly to the citizens of Alabama:

Alabama is losing hundreds of millions of dollars in gaming and lottery revenue to Mississippi, Tennessee, Georgia, and Florida. This continues to happen year after year because the Alabama State Legislature has not approved the comprehensive gaming and lottery plan that would give the people of Alabama the chance to vote on a constitutional amendment. If the constitutional amendment approving the comprehensive gaming and lottery plan were to pass, the State of Alabama would generate hundreds of millions of dollars in additional tax revenue that could be used to fund Alabama priorities including broadband, healthcare, college & trade school scholarships, new job growth, workforce development, and new business opportunities.

The Alabama Track Owners Association (ATOA) is asking the citizens of Alabama to call their legislators and tell them to pass a comprehensive gaming and lottery bill now. The toll-free phone number is 1-855-Gaming-1 (1-855-426-4641).

To view the commercial, please visit www.alabama4gaming.org.

About Alabama Track Owners Association (ATOA):

The ATOA is a non-profit organization with four charter members: Birmingham Race Course, Greenetrack Bingo & Racing, Mobile Greyhound Park, and VictoryLand. The ATOA believes the citizens of Alabama should have the opportunity to vote on a comprehensive gaming and lottery plan that creates, regulates, and taxes an education lottery, sports betting, and casino gaming. The comprehensive gaming and lottery plan, if approved by the voters via constitutional amendment, will  provide the State of Alabama with additional tax revenue to fund initiatives that will improve the quality of life for Alabama residents. For more information, please visit www.alabamatrackowners.org

Gambling Bill Dies as Legislative Session Winds Down

05.18.21 – In this article, Kim Chandler of the Associated Press reports that the legislative session ended without a vote on casino gaming and lottery bill. A summary of the article is contained in the following quote: “The session wound down Monday night without a House vote on the Senate-passed lottery and casino bill. House Speaker Mac McCutcheon said House leaders opted not to bring the bill up for debate on the busy final legislative day after negotiations fell apart earlier this month.”

To review the full article, please access it at the following link location: https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/alabama/articles/2021-05-17/gambling-bill-dies-as-alabama-legislative-session-winds-down

Gambling bill stalls in the Alabama House as tempers flare

05.08.21 – In this article, Kim Chandler of the Associated Press reports that negotiations to provide Alabama citizens with the opportunity to vote on a constitutional amendment to legalize lotteries and casinos stalled in the Alabama House of Representatives.

A summary of the article is contained in the following quote: “…The demise of the legislation led to finger-pointing over who was responsible and an unsuccessful effort by Republicans to switch the bill for a GOP-backed lottery proposal. Republicans accused Democrats of making last-minute demands on the bill. Democrats criticized what they described as a bad-faith push by Republicans to change out the bill.”

To review the full article, please access it at the following link location: https://apnews.com/article/business-bills-government-and-politics-e17643cce3f28417c49e3c99a1625173

Comprehensive gaming, lottery bill appears to be dead for this session

05.07.21 – In this article, Brandon Moseley of the Alabama Political Reporter reports that the Alabama House did not vote on the bill to provide Alabama citizens with the opportunity to vote on a constitutional amendment to legalize the lotteries and casinos. A summary of the article is contained in the following quote: “…During the day, negotiations between the House leadership and House Democrats on the comprehensive gambling bill collapsed, and the measure never came to the floor of the house for consideration — neither did a simple lottery, which was the fallback position of House leadership.”

To review the full article, please access it at the following link location: https://www.alreporter.com/2021/05/07/comprehensive-gambling-lottery-bill-appears-to-be-dead-for-the-session/

Alabama Senate approves bills for lottery, casinos

4.13.21 – In this article, Mike Cason reports that the Alabama State Senate approved the bill to provide Alabama citizens with the opportunity to vote on a constitutional amendment to legalize the lotteries and casinos. The key messaging points are contained in the following quote: “McClendon’s original bill proposed a constitutional amendment to allow voters to decide whether to have a lottery but did not include casinos. But the Senate tonight adopted a substitute bill by McClendon that added six new casinos to the plan. McClendon said he did not have enough support to pass the bill if it only included the lottery.”

To read the full article, please visit the webpage at the following link location: https://www.al.com/news/2021/04/alabama-senate-debating-bills-for-lottery-casinos.html

Alabama lottery debate to continue after Senate passes one bill, carries second over

4.07.21. In the enclosed article from the Montgomery Advertiser, Kirsten Fiscus and Bryan Lyman discuss the results of the Alabama Senate debate on the lottery. The most significant messaging points are captured in the following quote: “The Alabama Senate passed a lottery bill Wednesday. But not the one that would establish a lottery. The chamber Wednesday approved legislation enabling a lottery after hours of debate and amendments that would use money to reduce the state sales tax on groceries and for educational loans. But it stopped short of approving the constitutional amendment that would establish the lottery in the state.”

To read the full article, please visit the webpage by clicking the following link: https://www.montgomeryadvertiser.com/story/news/2021/04/07/alabama-lottery-senate-passes-bill-plan-review-second/7116816002/