Internet cafes get reprieve from Manatee County Commission

January 22, 2013 

MANATEE -- Although Internet cafes have been proliferating in the area, the Manatee County Commission Tuesday informally agreed to wait on deciding whether to regulate them.

Some of the commissioners asked whether the cafes, which are popular with senior citizens, allow a form of gambling that the county should oversee,. But by the work session’s conclusion, they seemed content to remain with the status quo.

“It’s a free country, and they should be allowed to go in there if they want to,” said Commissioner Carol Whitmore, noting that the cafes serve only adults.

A two-year study on the subject is underway, and state legislators are expected to review the matter in 2014, officials said.

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