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HB 158, Destination Resort Casinos

Municipal Impact Position Contact
Evaluating Michael McPherson, (678) 686-6390

Last Updated: 1/19/2018
Subject Area: Alcoholic Beverages | Economic Development and Redevelopment | Taxation |
Resources: bill text
This bill would create the Georgia Gaming Commission (GGC). The 5 member commission would be appointed by the Governor (3 members), the Lieutenant Governor (1 member) and the Speaker (1 member). The GGC would have broad powers to regulate, oversee and investigate the gaming industry with equal access given to the GBI. Both the GBI and GGC would have real time access to all gaming/tracking systems. 

The GGC would accept all applications for destination resort licenses, occupational licenses, supplier’s licenses, fees, and a gross receipts tax of 20%. All fees and taxes would be placed in a Destination Resort Trust Fund (DRTF). 

The bill allows for 2 Destination Resort Casinos (DRC) determined by population—1 in Fulton County, and 1 other in DeKalb, Chatham, Clayton, Cobb or Gwinnett Counties. The Fulton County DRC would require $2B in investment “with proximity” to a convention center district within the same county and a minimum of 1000 guest rooms. The other DRC would require $450M with proximity to a convention center district within the same county. 

The GGC would the power to negotiate with DRC applicants, by invitation, and select the county in which the DRC is awarded. The GGC would have the discretion to determine all criteria needed in applications “in addition to all state and local alcohol, zoning, occupancy, and other land use laws the commission deems appropriate.” Applicants would have to provide a history of and proposed plan for community involvement or investment in the community where the DRC would be located, including a description of the projected economic benefit to the community.

One June 30th of each year, all funds in the TRTF greater than $5M will be transferred to the Georgia Lottery Corporation. The Lottery Corporation would in turn divide the funds with 70% to HOPE scholarships and 30% to needs based scholarships.   

Also see SB 79 LC 28 8234ER 


1/31/2017 - Assigned To House Committee


Rep. Ron Stephens
District 164
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