After a flip-flop in Jackson and by on line casino managers on the Coast, the Senate on Tuesday confirmed Al Hopkins as chairman of the Mississippi Gaming Fee.
Hopkins, a Gulfport legal professional, will serve his third four-year time period as chairman by means of Sept. 30, 2025.
Hopkins’ affirmation got here after a Twitter storm between Gov. Tate Reeves and Sen. David Blount, D-Hines, the chairman of the Senate Gaming Committee.
Reeves defended his alternative of Hopkins and berated Blount for holding up the affirmation and Lt. Gov. Delbert Hosemann for appointing a Democrat to chair the committee.
Blount launched feedback from on line casino operators who stated they have been involved with Hopkins’ obvious readiness to alter the rule that regulates the place on line casino websites might be situated on the Coast.
Blount stated Friday he didn’t intend to ask for a vote on the affirmation.
He voted in opposition to the affirmation Tuesday and eight different senators voted no or current, which suggests they didn’t vote for or in opposition to the appointment.
The tipping level got here Monday, after a letter was despatched to Reeves, Hosemann and Blount by the group that represents casinos on the Coast and all through the state. It was shared by Y’all Politics.
“In mild of current occasions and after consulting with members of the affiliation the Mississippi Gaming & Hospitality Affiliation believes that the business shouldn’t be concerned within the strategy of appointing regulators because of the message it sends and potential for battle it creates,” wrote Larry Gregory, govt director.
“The affiliation and its members respect the method and belief the governor’s resolution can be in the most effective curiosity of the business and the state,” he wrote.
Hopkins’ affirmation was the one on line casino laws to make it to the Senate ground this session. Payments to permit on-line sports activities betting, to permit playing on cruise vessels on the Pearl River and to authorize slot machines in airports all died in committee.