Hawaii Governor opposes proposed casino

By Violeta Prockyte

Hawaii Governor David Ige expressed his doubt about a proposed casino in Kapolei, the second-largest city on the island of Oahu.

Currently, slot machines and poker games are illegal in Hawaii. The state doesn’t have a commercial or tribal casino, and there’s no lottery either. But the planned casino venue could change that.

The Hawaiian Homes Commission (HHC) recently approved a proposal for the new venue, and despite expressed opposition from the Governor, it will likely be included in the legislative agenda for 2021. The Governor’s stance is also considered unofficial so far, as it was first reported by the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Reportedly, the Governor said, “The benefits [of a casino] would not exceed the social costs of gambling. It does not provide economic value to our community.”

Casino.org reported the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands (DHHL) proposed the construction of an integrated resort because it needs to raise $6bn to provide housing assistance to nearly 28,000 Native Hawaiians. The shortage of money in the agency’s budget is likely associated with ongoing pandemic struggles.


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