New merger terms that would unite Caesars Entertainment Corp. and Caesars Acquisition Co. have moved the company closer to ending its Chapter 11 status. Caesars Entertainment Operating was approved to drop $10 billion of its $18 billion debt last month, and Caesars revenue rose 2.8% to $3.9 billion compared with a year ago.
Indiana House legislators have sent to the Senate House Bill 1350, a measure that would charge an additional wagering tax instead of the current $3-per-person casino admission tax beginning July 2018. The tax would be capped at 3.5% and likely take away $4.5 million from local governments in Northwest Indiana between 2018 and 2022, the Legislative Services Agency finds.
According to CEO Lawrence Ho, Melco Crown Entertainment is prepared to spend whatever it takes to build a casino resort in Japan, strengthening its position against rivals Las Vegas Sands and MGM Resorts International. Since Japan legalized casinos in December, investment banking company CLSA anticipates the gaming market there could be worth as much as $25 billion.
The Internet Poker Consumer Protection Act introduced to California lawmakers last week will attempt to address issues surrounding legalizing and regulating real-money internet poker sites. Californians were responsible for 16% of the nation's online poker revenue between 2009 and 2010, and the state's internet poker market has reached almost $400 million.
The Connecticut General Assembly's Public Safety and Security Committee will hold a forum on gaming Thursday as the Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan tribes consider building a third state casino north of Hartford. "Whatever we do with respect to the expansion of gaming, the state should look out for what's in the best interest of the state and what's the best deal out there," Rep. Joe Verrengia said.
Pennsylvania legislators are considering solutions to the state's budget deficit, such as legalizing online gaming, expanding slot machines and finding ways to fund host jurisdictions after a $10 million casino tax was ruled unconstitutional. Among other suggestions from lawmakers, Sen. Pat Browne has suggested tax credits for struggling casinos as compensation for continuing to pay the $10 million host fee.
MGM Grand's Level Up entertainment lounge offered visitors access to the world's first "Frogger" skill-based gaming competition Feb. 18 and 19. Hosted by Konami Gaming, event entry was free, and cash prizes were available.
A casino resort in Japan could cost as much as $10 billion, according to CEO Sheldon Adelson of Las Vegas Sands Corp., while brokerage CLSA has estimated that two resorts in major cities could earn that much in annual revenue. MGM Resorts International and Wynn Resorts are among the operators looking to score the first Japanese resort license, a decision officials are likely to make by 2019.
Online gaming has grown in leaps and bounds since its beginnings in 1994, when Antigua and Barbuda passed the Free Trade and Processing Zone Act that allowed licenses for companies offering internet gaming. The legal status of online gaming is constantly evolving, with some countries having no relevant laws at all, while others have fully allowed the activity for residents and nonresidents for all types of games both inside and outside of the nation.
HB 127, which would ban video gaming at Idaho tribal casinos, could cause legal issues for the state, according to Attorney General Lawrence Wasden. The Shoshone-Bannock tribes also argue that the bill goes against the outcomes of three lawsuits and seemingly violates the Contracts Clause of the Idaho Constitution.
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