JACKSONVILLE BEACH, Fla. -- As local sweepstakes shops prepare to close their doors, avid players say the ban will only force them to travel to another state.
Karen Nesnick frequents Winners Sweepstakes located on Beach Boulevard. Now that the Senate and House have passed a bill to ban the operation of centers like Winners, her visits are numbered.
"I'll come here and I'll put $10 in and you can win. You can have fun," said Karen Nesnick, Winners' customer.
All the bill needs is Governor Rick Scotts' signature. Once signed, it means dozens of local businesses around Jacksonville will have to close up shop, putting people out of work.
Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown has avoided talking about the issue in the past. When Action News asked him about the impact this new law will have on the city, he responded by saying the decision was already made.
"Clearly the state thought it was important to look at it, review everything and decided to pass legislation to make it illegal," said Mayor Brown.
Nesnick says she’ll just have to take her money elsewhere.
"That's where everybody is going to go. They're going to go to Georgia. It's only an hour and a half away," said Nesnick.
The manager at Winners says he feels badly for his employees, many of whom are already looking for a new job.
Governor Scott has until April 12th to sign the bill into law. Once he signs it the ban will take effect immediately.