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California Cardroom Moratorium Bill (AB341) Progresses Through Senate, Amended for Table Limit

The California Cardroom Moratorium Bill (AB341) has made significant progress in the legislative process, with updates on its status and amendments. The bill recently passed the Senate on a unanimous 32-0 vote, following its passage in the Assembly. AB341 aims to reinstate a 25-year-old moratorium on new cardroom licenses in the state, and its recent developments have brought it one step closer to becoming law. After receiving overwhelming support in the Senate, AB341 now requires concurrence from the Assembly due to an amendment made during the Senate deliberations. The amendment specifically modifies the bill’s provision regarding table limits for existing cardrooms. Previously, the bill allowed cardrooms with 20 tables or fewer to expand their operations by adding more tables. However, the recent amendment adjusts the threshold, permitting cardrooms with 19 tables or fewer to pursue additional tables. The amendment to the table limit provision was prompted by opposition from tribes in the San Diego region, particularly concerning a cardroom known as Stones Gambling Hall. The tribes expressed concerns about the cardroom’s potential expansion and its impact on the local gambling landscape. In response, the amendment was introduced to address these concerns while still allowing measured growth for cardrooms meeting the revised table limit criteria.

It is worth noting that the coalition of cardrooms supporting AB341 has expressed no objections to the amended provision. This collaboration and consensus among industry stakeholders have facilitated the bill’s smooth progression through the Senate. With AB341 now heading back to the Assembly for concurrence, legislators will review the amendment made in the Senate. Given the strong bipartisan support the bill has received thus far, and the general consensus surrounding the amendment, no significant issues are expected during the concurrence process. It is anticipated that the Assembly will approve the amendment and move the bill forward, bringing it one step closer to becoming law. Once AB341 receives concurrence from the Assembly, it will advance to Governor Gavin Newsom’s desk for his consideration and potential signature. The bill’s passage through the Senate on a unanimous vote reflects a significant milestone in the efforts to reinstate the moratorium on cardroom licenses in California.

Stakeholders, including cardrooms, gaming tribes, and interested parties, will continue to closely monitor the progress of AB341 and provide updates on further developments. As the bill moves through the final stages of the legislative process, the industry eagerly awaits its potential enactment into law, bringing forth a renewed regulatory framework for the cardroom sector in California.

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