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House panel rejects gambling study

By Anita Hofschneider

Associated Press


A Hawaii House committee has shot down a resolution asking the state to study the potential social and economic effects of gambling in Hawaii.

Rep. Clift Tsuji (D, Hilo-Wai­akea-Keau­kaha) says the Economic Development Committee on Friday rejected the proposal because the study would be too expensive.

Hawaii is the only U.S. state besides Utah where gambling is illegal.

Proponents say gambling could stimulate Hawaii's tourism industry. Opponents say they are worried that legalizing gambling would lead to increased crime and other negative societal impacts.

Past attempts at legalization have failed.

The issue is one of several resolutions that House lawmakers were discussing. Resolutions are official statements that do not have the force of law.

The committee moved forward a resolution to use federal funding to research the feasibility of "creating a world-class commercial space launch and control facility in Hawaii." Rep. Angus McKelvey introduced the resolution, which claimed Hawaii's location and telecommunications infrastructure make it ideal for a space launch facility. The state already invests in aerospace research.

Also on Friday the Senate Education Committee advanced a resolution asking the Board of Education to develop a sexuality health education program. The Hawaii Youth Services Network, which supports the resolution, says Hawaii has the 12th-highest rate of teen pregnancy in the U.S.

Two people submitted testimony opposing the resolution, saying that sexuality education is the job of parents, not teachers.

Sen. Jill Tokuda (D, Kailua-Kaneohe) says the Education Committee also moved forward a resolution to expand the Jump Start program to Maui and Hawaii.

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tiwtsfm wrote:
Thank you. Let's not waste any more time and money studying this. Gambling would be bad for the social structure of Hawaii. We do not need another place for crime to fester.
on March 23,2013 | 05:40AM
bender wrote:
Obviously you aren't aware that we already have gambling in Hawaii and that it is doing very well. The only thing is that the illegal gambling brings no public benefit, only the downside that so many opponent keeping harping about.
on March 23,2013 | 10:56AM
wiliki wrote:
There is also a lot of legal gambling in Hawaii. Social gambling is legal but the local organized crime figures don't allow high stakes social games in Hawaii.
on March 23,2013 | 11:16AM
serious wrote:
A lottery is the answer. We don't need another gas or other taxes. With millions of tourists coming here, they will buy a huge percentage of the tickets.
on March 23,2013 | 06:51AM
wiliki wrote:
Nope this is just a tax on the poor who shouldn't be using their welfare money to buy lottery tickets.
on March 23,2013 | 11:17AM
Bdpapa wrote:
I'm for a lottery. Where are the poor getting cash from to buy these tickets? And if you are on the bottom what you got to lose? You are leeching off the system already and have no plans to do better.
on March 23,2013 | 11:33AM
livinginhawaii wrote:
Once again I would like to know the direct source of funding for the Hawaii Coalition Against Legalized Gambling. I highly suspect that it comes from a gaming industry insider who is benefiting from the fact that huge sums of revenue are being made from the people of Hawaii who gamble elsewhere.
on March 23,2013 | 07:40AM
serious wrote:
Living, you are right, if the legislators would wear long sleeved shirts like the NASCAR racers to show their sponsors we'd have a clearer picture. Hawaiian Air obviously profits as does the Vegas interests.
on March 23,2013 | 09:34AM
bender wrote:
That's an excellent observation, why would Vegas be happy about people in Hawaii being able to spend their money here in Hawaii, or about people opting for Hawaii instead of Vegas. Another faction that probably lobbies against gambling is our very own operaters of the 6-5 and parley sheets.
on March 23,2013 | 11:00AM
wiliki wrote:
Baloney.... LV operators would love to expand to Hawaii. Makes it easier for them to milk our addicted gamblers of all their and their families funds.
on March 23,2013 | 11:20AM
Bdpapa wrote:
A couple of years ago a rep from Boyd Gaming testified against gambling in Hawaii.
on March 23,2013 | 01:16PM
wiliki wrote:
Doesn't Boyd host a lot of Hawaii tours and Hawaii gamblers? Don't think that they can expand to Hawaii-- but the big boys will. They just want to protect their little turf.
on March 23,2013 | 06:09PM
niimi wrote:
Go to HCALG dot ORG. This lists the supports in the About Us section. Mostly churches listed there.
on March 23,2013 | 01:55PM
livinginhawaii wrote:
Wrong. This does NOT contain monetary contribution data. They do state that they are now a 501c3 - note that this was not on their website a few months back nor were they registered a year ago yet they have had an office on Fort Street Mall for at least 4 years. This registration must be recent as they are not listed in the Attorney General's database at this juncture. At least going forward they will now be required to report their funding. The big PR problem they will now face is that they are not required to report donations received prior to registration.
on March 23,2013 | 03:09PM
Maneki_Neko wrote:
A gambling study costs too much? The potential for hundreds of millions in revenues and the study costs too much?
on March 23,2013 | 11:31AM
niimi wrote:
I'd be outraged if I were native Hawaiian and being the only native American culture to be denied their rightful control over their lands and what goes on their. The majority of native American tribes have used gaming as a wildly successful way to revive decades, generations of economic suppression brought about by state governments. It appears that government in Hawaii is coordinated in there effort to ensure there is no fiscal advancement by the native Hawaiian-American people. Congress must first ensure that native Hawaiian people are recognized as native American as is their right. In turn the state of Hawaii must let go of this issue altogether.
on March 23,2013 | 01:52PM
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