In a nationwide vote on Jan. 28, Bahamians rejected proposals to legalize gambling by islanders.

Bahamians are barred from gambling in casinos at tourist resorts, such as Atlantis on Paradise Island and the Wyndham and Sheraton in Nassau.

The Baha Mar casino in Nassau will be the largest in the Caribbean when it opens in early 2015.

Despite a low voter turnout, voters also turned down the establishment of a national lottery and the legalization of web shop gaming.

Web shops, which have sprung up in Nassau and on Grand Bahama Island, are underground gambling operations where islanders bet on numbers in televised U.S. lotteries, even though it is illegal.

The current government, headed by Prime Minister Perry Christie, had encouraged Bahamians to back legalized gambling, saying it would create employment.

It is expected that the illegal web shop operations will be shut down.

Follow Gay Nagle Myers on Twitter @gnmtravelweekly.

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