Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Gambling in Nevada. When and How?

Roulette Roulette Wheel Ball Turn Movement When one mentions gambling, the first thing I think of is Las Vegas, Nevada. The town with a history of the mob and gangsters who tried to make their city respectable.  I don't even think of anything on the east coast because I grew up in the west.

Gambling in Nevada has an interesting history due to the state's love - hate relationship with it.  In a sense, gambling has been with the state since the first influx of people hungry to participate in the gold rush up there and with them came various games they'd gamble on.

When the first territorial governor was appointed, he worked on outlawing all forms of gambling.  He convinced the territorial legislature to place high fines on all games of chance but when Nevada became a state in 1864, the new government tried to legalize it again.  Unfortunately, they failed but they were able to reduce penalties associated with anyone convicted of illegal gambling.

Although gambling was once more outlawed, the penalties were relaxed and gotten rid of so by 1919, cities and towns throughout the state were opening card rooms and Reno became the gambling capital of the state with both legal and illegal card rooms.  In 1931, the laws changed to allow gambling so there were no illicit rooms operating.

About the same time, a Las Vegas business received the first gambling license starting the trend of gambling in that city which over time became the capital city of gambling.  Up until the mid 1940's, licensing was done by counties and other local levels but then it was shifted to the state.  Casino's paid taxes based on their gross earnings in addition to a per machine fee.  The first year the taxes were collected, the state made over $650,000 in additional revenue.

Over the years, the Flamingo and other famous casinos opened, bringing more people and growth to the state.  In the late 1950's the gaming commission was created and they created a Black Book listing all known cheaters and others as a way of keeping the industry clean. 

In the 1960's licensing laws changed so public corporations could own casino's without every stockholder.  This lead to an increased growth of casino's in Las Vegas.  In addition, Don Laughlin, the former owner of the 101 club, purchased land and a former motel on the Arizona, Nevada boarder.  The town got its name when the Post Office Inspector rejected Laughlin's choice and named it after the owner.

Tourism developed along side the increased number of casino's open in Las Vegas.  Casino's and hotels were torn down as they aged and newer, larger ones were build until the downtown area of Las Vegas resembled a clash of dreams people had to check out.  The latest development is when Nevada entered into agreements with other states to offer internet based poker.

Let me know what you think, I'd love to hear. Have a great day.

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