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I am writing this in support of HB1234 regarding illegal gambling activities. Nearly every industry in Colorado has some kind of consumer protection component — or, at least, recourse for consumers when they feel they have been wronged. Except one. Illegal gambling arcades are popping up across the state and targeting our communities’ most vulnerable, such as children and immigrants. It is no coincidence operators of illegal gambling target the intercity and communities of color. On a personal level, I have seen how legal gambling has destroyed lives. I fear to imagine what illegal gambling will do.
Colorado’s legal casinos are tightly regulated for a reason and illegal gambling is dangerous and unchecked. In legal casinos, games are regulated to ensure fairness to players. Legal casino games must be winnable and casinos must pay out a percentage of revenue in winnings. Illegal gambling arcades have none of these consumer protections.
Fortunately, Jefferson County Representative Lang Sias is supporting a bill that defends our communities by updating the regulations around illegal gambling arcades. Gambling is fine in Central City or Black Hawk, but it doesn’t belong in our communities targeting our kids.
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