Casinos are still considered illegal in Georgia. A major reason for this is that the lawmakers and voters have held conservative beliefs towards casinos for a long. The good news is that some have sought to change such laws and the discussions have already begun.
Currently, the state only allows regulated lottery, charity gambling, and playing casino games on a cruise ship. These are the only land-based options available for Georgia residents to satisfy their gambling needs.
The gambling history of Georgia
Georgia’s conservative approach towards all matters associated with casinos dates back to the late 19th century. During the first part of the 19th century, a vibrant gambling culture had prevailed across the state. With the introduction of certain laws in the latter half of the 1800s, most forms of gambling were outlawed.
In the 1970s, charity bingo and raffles were legalized in Georgia. This was done on the grounds that the organizers didn’t get to make any personal profit out of them. Nearly a century after the banning of the state lottery, it was once again legalized in the 1990s.
In 2012, an attempt was made to introduce a land-based casino. The idea was to donate its profits to fund the education program. As it didn’t get any support from the lawmakers, the attempt failed.
Current status of casino regulation in Georgia
The lawmakers in Georgia have still not opened up to the idea of constructing casinos across the state. Amid the legal hassles, some lobbyists are seeking the approval of lawmakers to develop the casino industry. They argue that these casinos can fund the state’s educational program in a big way. One of the best examples is the HOPE Scholarship.
HOPE stands for Helping Outstanding Pupils Educationally. Since its inception, the revenues from the state lottery have already contributed $10 billion to it. Amendments have to be agreed upon in a referendum by the voters in order to legalize casino gambling. A bill in this regard hasn’t been introduced yet.
Legal age for casino gambling in the state
In the state of Georgia, all participants in the state lottery must be over 18 years of age. The players need to be above 21 years of age to gamble at the only casino in the state. This is the Emerald Princess Casino located in Brunswick.
Playing online casino games
Fortunately, the online casinos with offshore servers have come to the rescue of the gamblers. Lawmakers of the state haven’t yet legalized or regulated online casinos. However, those who want to play online casino games with real money can do so on offshore online casinos. This means you can play online casinos while in Georgia. The only condition is that the casino’s servers must not be hosted in the state.
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