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Florida bill designed to fight gambling scandal could cost state thousands of jobs

• Arturo Garcia via

Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) signed a bill into law on Wednesday imposing new restriction on online gambling parlors in the state that could leave thousands unemployed, the Orlando Sentinel reported.

The measure, House Bill 155, was passed by the state Senate on April 4 by a 36-4 vote, following a three-year investigation into racketeering, money laundering and other charges against a Tampa-based charity, Allied Veterans of the World. The group was found to have lied about donating the majority of its’ profits, around $300 million worth, to charity. Investigators found it only gave around 2 percent of its earnings to charity.

The scandal led to the resignation of Lieutenant Gov. Jennifer Carroll on March 12. Carroll owned a consulting firm connected to the organization and appeared in a commercial promoting it in March 2010.

Scott vowed at that point to sign the bill, but some Florida residents criticized the measure, saying it would also hurt regular entertainment centers for seniors and children while failing to curtail illegal gambling.

“It’s just going to enhance the problem because people are going to go find somewhere else or another method to get by as far as gambling goes,” Tallahassee, Florida resident Brian Hayes told WCTV-TV.


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