Massachusetts legislature backs down on casino ATM measure

For a brief time, it seemed that the Commonwealth of Massachusetts would change its banking statutes to allow state banks to operate ATMs in casinos. But after an outcry from anti-gambling groups, that part of a banking reform bill was shelved.

According to a report by Sentinel & Enterprise, the intent of the amendment in H. 4110 was to correct an inequity in the law that forbids state-chartered banks from operating ATMs in casinos — a right granted by federal law to nationally chartered banks.

Removal of the measure means continued confusion over casino ATM rules, Massachusetts house member Paul Donato said.

“Now the question becomes, do the federal chartered banks still have the right to put them into casinos and only the state banks [are] not allowed? … Or is it that state law overrides the federal to say that we don’t allow ATMs in the casino at all?”

The proposed amendment would have allowed state and federal institutions to locate ATMs within casinos, but barred both from placing them in gaming areas, the article said. Anti-casino groups are calling for an all-out ban.

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