Archive for the “Q” Category

Encyclopedia: Gambling in America – Letter Q

Quebec Gambling in AmericaPublic officials in Quebec in a sense “jumped the gun” when a lottery was introduced in Montreal in 1968 as a device to generate revenue for the municipal government. Judicial officials in Quebec took exception to the gaming operation, as they held it to be in violation of the Canadian Penal Code of 1892. Action did not stop for long. After the Penal Code was amended, the Quebec government created Loto Quebec in 1969, and the next year Quebec became the first province in Canada to establish a lottery. A separate agency licensed a wide range of games for charities and also to support agricultural fairs: bingo games, raffles, and limited-time casino events. The agency also regulated pari-mutuel horse-race wagering.
As the lottery grew along with private charity-oriented gaming, the province initiated studies of casinos’ gaming. The studies persisted from 1978 into the early 1990s. Part of the motivation guiding a conclusion that tourist-oriented casinos should be authorized was the revelation that illegal gambling and particularly illegal slot machines were quite prevalent in Quebec. In 1993 the province opened Casino du Montreal in a facility that was the French Pavilion at the Montreal World’s Expo of 1967. The casino has a 90,000-square-foot gaming floor, the largest in Canada until a permanent casino was built in Windsor, Ontario.  The province also authorized government-owned casinos for Charlevoix, sixty miles north of the city of Quebec, and for Hull, across the Ottawa River from the national capital city.
The three casinos welcome 10 million visitors a year, 20% of whom are tourists. Most of the revenue (67%) is derived from slot machine gaming; tables generate 31%, and keno games 2%. The casinos have a combined 200 table games and approximately 4,000 slot machines. The casinos do not offer credit to players; however, they do have automated teller machines. Casino du Montreal actually has a branch of a major bank located on its premises.
The mid-1990s also brought another new policy to the province. Video lottery terminals are now permitted in restaurants, bars, and taverns.  The province has placed over 15,000 machines in 4,400 locations.

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