COLUMBUS (AP) - Storefront sweepstakes parlors appear on their way out in Ohio, after state lawmakers delivered a one-two punch today effectively banning the businesses statewide and blocking new startups until the ban takes hold.
Both the Ohio House and Ohio Senate played a part with passage of a pair of bills, defying opponents who had successfully blocked earlier attempts at a crackdown.
The Ohio Senate voted 27-6 on the crackdown after hearing hours of testimony this spring from employees and owners of the so-called Internet cafes who said it would unnecessarily cost the state jobs.
Meanwhile, the Ohio House voted 76-14 on a bill extending an existing moratorium on any new parlors and requiring those currently in operation to submit new affidavits to the state.
Republican Gov. John Kasich is expected to sign both bills.
More than 620 Internet cafes are in operation across the state, representing growing competition to legalized casinos and games held for charity.