Senior Arcades Targeted In Internet Cafe Ban

Mar 28, 2013

Rep. Jim Waldman, D-Coconut Creek, was one of just six members of the House to vote against the ban on Internet cafes. Senior arcades would be affected, too.
Credit Meredith Geddings/

The Florida House last week voted to ban Internet cafes and similar businesses. The Senate is expected to do the same.

This is happening very quickly after Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll’s resignation. A client of her former public relations firm is facing criminal charges relating to Internet cafes.

Democratic Rep. Jim Waldman of Coconut Creek is one of the few voices saying the legislation is being shoved through without consideration for the legal business being swept into the ban.

The final vote in the House was 110 – 6.

Waldman voted "no" and says he has no regrets. He hopes the Senate will amend the bill and make sure senior arcades are excluded.

“This bill needs to be cleaned up and fixed,” Waldman said. “If the ban goes into effect, you’re going to see thousands of people out of jobs.”

He talks about the senior arcades - which he refers to as daycare for seniors - that will be shut down if the legislation isn't changed. He says thousands of seniors will have no place to go and won't get to spend as much time with their friends.