New study: Fla. casinos won't have big impact

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Florida lawmakers are getting a much-anticipated study on gambling that concludes bringing large casinos to the state would not have a big impact on the state's economy.

The question, however, is whether these findings will halt plans by the Republican-controlled Legislature to seriously consider the issue in the coming months.

A Senate panel plans to hold public hearings later this month about whether to expand gambling. The Legislature in 2012 rejected a bill to add casinos.

Some critics say Floridians don't want casinos but that the gambling industry is giving out large campaign donations to get legislators to consider casinos.

Rep. Jim Waldman, D-Coconut Creek and a member of a House gaming committee, said it would be "silly" for legislators to spend time on the issue without passing a bill.

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