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House Committee Pans Senate-Backed Plan For Two Casinos

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A Senate plan to legalize two casinos could be headed for a familiar fate in the House, after members of the Ways and Means committee voted 11-9 Tuesday to kill the proposal.

The House has never passed a casino bill, and it was only a month ago when lawmakers there rejected a plan for a single casino.

Supporters are banking on a provision in this bill that would distribute $25 million in revenue annually to cities and towns.

Democrat Thomas Schamberg of Wilmot says that would go a long way to help cash-strapped communities.

“To fund their schools, public safety, basic services, to reduce the need for increases in property taxes.”

The state could also see upwards of $160 million in annual revenue.

But opponents continued to dismiss arguments that New Hampshire should follow in the path of Massachusetts simply for fear of revenue being lost across the border.

Hillsborough Democrat Gil Shattuck says counting on money from casinos to balance the budget is a risky proposition.

“As far as I’m concerned, this is yet another silver bullet. It is not going to solve our fiscal problems.”

The House will take up the bill next week.

Michael serves as NHPR's Program Director. Michael came to NHPR in 2012, working as the station's newscast producer/reporter. In 2015, he took on the role of Morning Edition producer. Michael worked for eight years at The Telegraph of Nashua, covering education and working as the metro editor.

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