Sacramento raises bet limits for poker games

Poker games in Sacramento, Calif., are about to get hotter with the new year approaching. The Sacramento City Council voted last month to raise bet limits for poker games in casinos and card rooms, with the new ordinance going into affect Jan. 1.

The new ordinance changes the wagering limit from $49 a hand to $1,000, allowing for much bigger plays and pots to be won. The change also ups the number of tables allowed in each card room from eight to nine.

The City Council approved the change in poker game betting limits after the state legislature passed a law giving local governments authority over the limits.

Previously, a state law placed a cap on wagers in card rooms and casinos. The new law allows local governments to set whatever limit they deem appropriate, which could result in lower limits in some places and a raise in others, such as in Sacramento.

The change effects three operating card rooms in the Sacramento area: Capitol Casino, the Limelight, and the Silver Fox.

Card rooms have argued they need more poker tables and higher betting limits to compete with other forms of gambling allowed in the state, such as Native American casinos or lotteries.

City Councilman Robbie Waters told local news there's a desire in the city to play cards, and the council was just trying to make it easier for card rooms to run a profitable business there.

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