Governor says legislature too focused on gambling

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Governor Riley urged legislators Wednesday to turn their focus to economic recovery in light of Alabama's highest unemployment rate in two decades.

Riley said the legislative branch is tied up debating gambling when there are more important issues at hand.

"Every year our legislators spend more time debating gambling than anything else.  In good times and bad, it seems to be the only priority for some of them.  The entire world is going through a recession right now and people in this state are truly hurting.  We need to take action now to get our economy growing," Riley said.

The Governor is pushing the Alabama Economic Recovery Plan, mentioned in his State of the State Address.

He says the plan, made up of three bills, will jump start the state's economy through a work tax credit, a job creation tax credit and an economic expansion act.

On Wednesday, a committee in the Alabama House approved a proposed constitutional amendment to tax and regulate electronic bingo machines.