Fri., April 20, 2012 10:32am (EDT)

Lottery Board Cold Toward Gambling Complex
By Parker Wallace & Ellen Reinhardt
Updated: 2 years ago

ATLANTA  —  
The Chairman of the Georgia Lottery Board says they don’t have the authority to move forward on a proposed $1 billion gambling complex. (image courtesy of  The Georgia Lottery)
The Chairman of the Georgia Lottery Board says they don’t have the authority to move forward on a proposed $1 billion gambling complex. (image courtesy of The Georgia Lottery)
The Chairman of the Georgia Lottery Board says they don’t have the authority to move forward on a proposed $1 billion gambling complex.

Developer Dan O’Leary presented the proposal to the Board on Thursday. He says the project, which would include 7,500 video lottery terminals and other attractions, would fund the Hope scholarship program and offer an economic boost.

But Board chairman James Braswell says that is a public policy decision that the General Assembly should make.

Governor Nathan Deal opposes the gambling complex.

“I think I have made my position clear that I don’t favor anything that looks like a casino and that one looks like a casino to me," he said. "We have a very successful lottery system in the state of Georgia. I think we need to protect it. We need to try to enhance it in any way we can. I think though the concept of video terminals sorta does expand the idea of the lottery in its traditional sense.”

O’Leary says the gambling complex could generate $350 million each year for the Hope scholarship program and create 25 hundred jobs.