TALLAHASSEE, FLA. (Florida News Network) -- The bill to ban Internet Cafes passed easily through the Florida Senate in Tallahassee, and is headed to Gov. Rick Scott's desk.
But opponents did not go quietly.
There were blistering critiques of the measure as something ill-thought and too quickly written.
Some said the measure was overkill to such a degree that it was "solving" problems that didn't exist.
Gale Fontaine, president of the Florida Arcade Association, said lawmakers were doing more than banning storefront casinos.
She says they were also shutting down penny arcades that are popular with the senior set.
"You can't be a legal business for 30 years and then one day wake up and have the legislature decide that 'Oh, you're not legal anymore,' " she said. These rooms are very important to the seniors."
She adds that these are the very people that lawmakers promise to protect when they get elected, and they're turning around and dealing damage, instead.
Fontaine says there's a world of difference between Penny Arcades and Internet Cafes.
She said she believes it's a plot by pari-mutuel lobbyists to shut down the competition and get all those seniors into their dog and horse tracks.
It has been no secret that dog and horse tracks have been bleeding business because of the Penny Arcades. Many seniors see the chance to socialize in air-conditioned comfort as superior to heading to the tracks.