Extremadura Eagerly Awaiting New Gambling Bill
The Council of State of the Spanish autonomous community of Extremadura has given a positive opinion on the new gambling proposal.
Under its provisions, Extremadura will be allowed to construct large entertainment complexes, which will include hotels, spas, cultural facilities, conference centers, but also casinos, bingo halls and slot parlors.
Next Step – the Assembly
Though the Council of State expressed a favorable opinion on the proposal, it has made certain remarks, which have been taken into consideration by the regional government. According to the government Vice President, Pilar Blanco-Morales, these remarks will be incorporated into the final text.
The new text will introduce stricter environmental legislation deadlines for planning permission, which could result in delays going up to a month and a half during the licensing process. In addition to that, all other deadlines will be processed one after another, instead of simultaneously as the regional government had initially intended.
Government spokesperson Gil Rosiña stated the next step would have to be made by the Board of the Assembly, which needed to set a procedural schedule. A plenary will decide whether the text will be greenlighted in its entirety or not. If it gets approved, then the whole process will move forward to amendments to the bill.
Support from the Opposition
Blanco-Morales added she was confident the bill would be approved by the regional legislature, especially since the biggest opposition party Partido Popular had already announced its support for the proposal.
The main reason why Partido Popular is behind the new bill is the fact it will generate investment in the region.
The new gambling legislation should attract more investments, but would also reduce urban planning and administrative deadlines.
Moreover, it would impose more favorable tax conditions. Leisure centers with casinos would get a gaming taxes deduction of up to 80%, at least that’s the proposal now being considered by the government.
Investors would also have additional legal and fiscal benefits.
However, there are those opposing the new law. One of them is the General Secretary of the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party (PSOE) Álvaro Jaén, who said the new proposal would offer unnecessary tax advantages, as well as unlimited opening hours.