Should gaming laws be modernized for money to fix SC roadways?

Should gaming laws be modernized for money to fix SC roadways?

NORTH AUGUSTA, SC (WFXG) - South Carolina's primary election is on Tuesday. On one of the ballots, voters will find a referendum asking if gaming laws should be modernized to fund a $20 billion project to fix South Carolina's roads and bridges instead of increasing taxes.

We hit the streets to see what Palmetto residents thought about the idea.

We found out that some folks are all for casinos and online gambling to fix the roadways. Others say gambling cultivates bad habits, and it'll do more harm than good.

"I think raising taxes hurt a lot of people. If you're going to gamble that means you have extra money to go gambling. With raising taxes, you might not even have extra money so I think that's a big difference," said Calvin Smith, a South Carolina resident.

Smith is all for legalizing statewide gambling versus raising taxes to repair the roads and bridges across the state, but Jason Young and Kelly Jones argue that casinos and gambling ruin lives and families.

"I think casinos are a bad idea because you're going to have people spending money they don't have trying to gain money and in turn its going to be bad for their households and their families," Young said.

"Instead of doing the gambling and online gambling, I would suggest maybe a one cent tax increase," Jones said. "I just say no. It's just a sin and I just don't go for it."

Smith said they're right, but that's when restraint comes into play.

"If you're responsible you can manage," Smith said.

The referendum on Tuesday's ballot is non-binding. Politicians just want to know what people think about the idea of modifying gaming laws for the $20 billion Department of Transportation project. Regardless of which side of the argument you're on, most South Carolinians will agree on one thing: the roads need to be fixed.

"It will help the city and state so they can fix the roads and anything else that's needed that they can't get funding for," Smith said.

"I'm sure there's other ways that we could get money to help the roads," Jones said, "because the roads are really bad and they're pathetic in some places, and they're hazardous."

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