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Texas Poker Bill Passes Out of House Committee

Written by:
Guest
Published on:
Apr/03/2009
Texas Poker

A bill to legalize poker in Texas has passed out of the House committee that oversees gambling issues. 
Rep. Jose Menendez' bill, the first gambling measure to come before the Licensing and Administrative Procedures Committee, passed 6-3 -- with the agreement that local communities would be able to vote on whether to legalize the game. 


"Poker players are the only people in the state of Texas saying, 'Please tax us,' " said Vernon Harrison, president of the 500-member Texas Card Players Association. "We want what we would get for that tax, which is a safe place to play poker."

"The vast majority of communities in Texas will hold successful elections allowing Texas Hold'em at specific locations," said Mike Lavigne, state director of the Poker Players Alliance (PPA). "This is a smart way to allow local control over what will quickly become an economic development issue."


In Texas, it's legal to play poker for fun, or to play for money in a private home. But once the house or the dealer profits, the game becomes illegal, which has pushed the state's poker scene underground. 
If cities voted to legalize poker, the state would be able to issue poker licenses to establishments, and allow them to collect fees on poker hands and game buy-ins. The poker operators would be taxed based on their revenue, money that would be returned to the state.

Texas is home ground for one of the most famous of poker players, the legendary Doyle Brunson.

Other states, most prominently California, are also in the process of considering legalizing poker via the Web.

Gambling911.com Staff

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