Yesterday Florida hosted their primary elections for the upcoming November general election. Up for grabs in the general election will be a seat in the Senate and the governor
Every now and then it is good to take a step back and appreciate where something came from. Like a birthday
Blackjack is a well established casino game. The reason for this is because this is an easy to learn casino game, and it has the reputation of being beatable. But along with these positives about blackjack new players are not as easy to come by as you might think.
Casinos of late seem to be focused on their bottom lines. It is all about bringing in the money. Especially with the economy being in that state it is. As a result some pretty awful house rules have sprung up and table minimums have been raised.
Nowadays you walk into a casino and mind the blackjack minimum on a game in which the dealer can hit soft 17 is $25. No new player or a person who is thinking of learning the game will pony up $25 to learn to play. Those would be some very expensive lessons.
But all those high rollers who are out at the blackjack tables are not going to be around forever. Eventually the house rules will get to the point of ridiculousness that those blackjack players hop over to online casinos to play
On Thursday of last week three brick and mortar casinos in western Pennsylvania opened the blackjack tables, drawing patrons away from the long haul drive to Atlantic City to enjoy some blackjack.
Unfortunately for Atlantic City the run of Pennsylvania casinos is not at an end yet. This past Tuesday, July 13th, saw the opening of blackjack tables in three eastern Pennsylvania casinos.
Blackjack players all over Pennsylvania are very excited with the addition of their favorite casino game in six casinos. This follows months of back and forth political arguments earlier this year about whether or not the State would allow table games like blackjack, roulette and craps to be added to their game offerings. But the demand was there and the income to the State in gaming taxes was needed. Everyone wins. Well, except for Atlantic City.
For decades Atlantic City was the mecca of East Coast gambling in the United States. But with the down turn in the economy and a lack of funds trickling down the government hill, states began looking at other ways to bring in money.
Pennsylvania is not the only state to look to gambling. Florida recently settled a long standing dispute with the Seminole tribe about blackjack there. Florida will be making $1.5 billion over the next five years from their deal with the Seminoles.
But with the addition of blackjack to the casino games at the Rivers, Meadows and Presque Isle Downs casinos in western Pennsylvania and the Mohegan Sun, Mount Airy and Hollywood casinos in eastern Pennsylvania could spell even more trouble for Atlantic City.
Not only will the time-honored East Coast gambling destination be competing with these six improved casinos next door, they might also be competing against online gambling. New Jersey is looking at legalizing online gambling for New Jersey residents that would make the competition even greater for Atlantic City.
While Pennsylvania blackjack players are quite happy with the new table games in six of their casinos, we shall have to see how Atlantic City fares over the next few years. Will it be able to keep itself afloat or will it sink in the ocean that is the gambling industry.
It is July 1st and that means one thing for the Seminole Tribe. Well, okay, it means two things but as a blackjack player I am really only concerned about one of those things.
The Seminole compact that took a Tolkien amount of time to be agreed upon is now in effect. This means that blackjack tables are now legal in five of the seven Seminole casinos. Of those five brick and mortar casinos, three are located in Broward County, one in Immokalee and the fifth casino can be found in Tampa.
The debate on whether the Seminoles would be allowed to have blackjack tables had been an ongoing since 2007 when Governor Charlie Crist signed a compact with them that would allow them blackjack at all seven of their casinos. State legislature quickly said that was not legal.
Ever since the blackjack tables were alternately called legal and illegal. This past May the Seminoles, Crist and state legislatures finally came to an agreement: the Seminoles would be allowed exclusivity on blackjack with five casinos being allowed the tables. The Seminoles will also have a twenty year exclusivity on Vegas style slot machines. In exchange the Seminoles will be playing $1.5 million over five years.
Now if the deal is broken by pari-mutuels being allowed blackjack in less than five years or Vegas style slot machines in less than twenty years, the respective portion of the Seminoles
Lawmakers in Rhode Island are certainly taking their time in deciding what to do with a bill about expanding the gambling offerings in two slot parlors. The two slot parlors are the Newport Grand and the Twin River in Lincoln.
The bill would allow for gambling expansion, which includes adding blackjack tables. But it seems that either lawmakers are a bit intimidated by blackjack, or there simply are not a lot of blackjack players in Rhode Island.
The bill would allow the state to determine how many blackjack tables there would be, their placement, their rules and odds, and to collect receipts from blackjack.
In 2006 citizens were allowed to vote on an amendment that would allow the Narragansett Indian Tribe to become partners with Harrah, and open a casino in West Warwick. The citizens voted no.
So lawmakers are aware that Rhode Island citizens are not crazy about the idea of having full casinos within their state. However, the state is hurting for money like a good number of states. And like those states, the lawmakers are eyeing revenue from legalized gambling to fill in some of the holes in the budget.
But lawmakers are not being too nasty about this and trying to force this through. There have been several revisions of the bill since it was first voted on. And for once the lawmakers are being considerate. They are going to have another review before voting.
But some citizens are not happy even with the lawmakers taking time to review the bill again. Barry Flynn, a resident of Newport, referred to the lawmakers as
Even if the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) now in effect California and Florida have been looking into making online gambling legal within their states for state residents. They are looking into it mostly as another source of income, which is much needed.
But while California has been going round and round in talks with tribes in their state, and Florida has been going back and forth with the Seminoles, New Jersey has snuck in under the radar.
On Thursday a bill, proposed by Senator Ray Lesniak, that would regulate online gambling within the state for New Jersey residents passed a committee vote 3-1. With the bill passed it can now go to the entire Senate for discussion and hopefully a vote that will allow for online gambling in New Jersey.
The way the bill works is to allow licensed casinos the ability to create sites online that allow for gambling online. Casinos must be licensed because without that license, according to federal law, they would not be allowed to offer online gambling. But since casinos in Atlantic City are licensed
Well, it is the beginning of June. And that means that the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) is now in effect.
But really do not expect things to change for those who play in online casinos and gamble online. The actual implementation and action of UIGEA does not rest on the shoulders of those of us who play blackjack online, or slots online, or poker or any other online casino game. That is correct. The UIGEA does not actually focus enforcement on the players.
Rather the enforcement and implementation rests in the hands of financial institutions, such as banks and credit card companies. Under UIGEA banks and credit card companies are the ones responsible for stopping all transactions to and from online casinos.
And that is why those who play online casino games will probably not be as affected by the UIGEA as they might think. See, online casinos are on the clever side. They use coding so that banks and credit card companies will not recognize that the funds to or from an online casino will not be recognized.
The UIGEA says, in short, that banks, credit card companies and other financial institutions cannot knowingly process transactions to or from online casinos. But if, thanks to the coding used by online casinos, banks and credit card companies do not recognize that the transactions are going to and from online casinos then they will not be able to stop them. And because they are not knowingly processing the transactions, it makes them
New Jersey is one of the leading regulators of the brick and mortar casino industry. So it isn