In face of deficit, Pa. looks again to gambling

    Republican lawmakers in Pennsylvania are taking steps toward the state’s third expansion of gambling in six years as a source of cash before they raise taxes to balance a deep budget deficit.

    Supporters estimate that an expansion could mean hundreds of millions of dollars in license fees plus collections from taxing a new stream of gambling profits.

    A spokesman says Gov. Tom Wolf is open to a gambling expansion, if it’s part of a comprehensive package that resolves what his administration projects to be a multibillion-dollar long-term deficit.

    Top Democratic lawmakers have yet to voice support.

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    One idea is Internet gambling, which is legal only in Delaware, New Jersey and Nevada. Other suggestions include allowing casinos to station slot machines at off-track horse-racing betting parlors and Pennsylvania’s six international airports.

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