By MARY SELL, Alabama Daily News
Sen. Greg Albritton, R-Range, said Wednesday he’s working on a comprehensive gambling bill and will file it “as soon as possible.”
Albritton met Tuesday with the Senate GOP caucus to present three possible bills with them and weigh support.
Albritton has argued recently that Alabamians want a lottery and are already gambling in ways that are unregulated and untaxed by the state. Expansion and regulation could mean hundreds of millions of dollars per year for the state, he said.
After today, there are a possible 12 legislative days left in this legislative session, technically more than enough time to pass a bill. But previous gambling bills have passed the Senate and run out of time in the more splintered and leery House of Representatives.
Last year, Alabama Senate approved a wide ranging gambling plan that included a state lottery, expanded casino operations and legalized sports betting.
A lottery would have to be approved by voters in a constitutional amendment and Albritton said lawmakers should consider public support for it an election year issue.
“All polling points that way,” Albritton said.
In an early 2020 poll of 625 registered Alabama voters for Alabama Daily News, 80% of respondents said they support a lottery. Eleven percent were opposed to it and 9% were undecided.