Senate OKs video poker, HOPE measure

The Georgia Senate doubled-down on video poker machines Thursday, approving a measure under which more money could flow to the state’s strained HOPE scholarship program.

House Bill 487 would give control and enforcement of video poker machines to the Georgia Lottery Corp., with a share of the profits going to HOPE. The plan has the support of Gov. Nathan Deal, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and convenience stores where these machines are played.

The 35-16 vote sends HB 487 back to the House because of changes made to the bill both in committee and on the floor. The bill’s backers also beat back challenges that almost sank the bill on the floor. The House originally approved HB 487 last week.

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