It seems as though the push for online poker to be legalised in the United States is already on, setting 2019 off to a good start. Senator Joseph Addabbo of New York has already set about launching a new bid to have the sector legalised in the state. The bill which he has filed looks to block out any company that has been involved in the iGaming market of the US after the date of December 31, 2006.
As the newly-appointed chair of New York’s Senate Racing, Gaming and Wagering Committee, Addabbo has proceeded to file Senate Bill 18. With this, anyone in the state of New York over the age of 21 will be able to legally play online poker.
It also looks to provide up to 11 online poker licences. Yet, only lottery gaming facilities that currently hold a licence and Class III gaming licensees can request such. If accepted, the licensees would need to pay a $10 million up-front fee to acquire a licence that will run for 10 years. In addition, a gross gaming revenue tax of 15% would need to be paid.
Even though the bill will only look to provide 11 online poker licences, each of the entities possessing one would also be able to operate an unlimited amount of skins under the same licence held, as long as each partner has the approval from the state’s Gaming Commission.
Other Parts of the Bill Legislation
The bill from Addabbo doesn’t only seek to provide online poker licences though. Instead, it also looks to block those companies that provided online gaming in the whole of the United States following December 31 of 2006. It was at that time that the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) came into effect, making gaming illegal.
For those companies that continued offering such though, the bill doesn’t just seek to block them from providing legal gaming options if it is passed. Instead, it effectively would make them ineligible altogether.
Addabbo’s bill has now been referred to the Committee of the Senate Racing, Gaming and Wagering, where it will undergo additional scrutiny before a decision is made on it.
The filing of this legislation marks the second one from Addabbo within the past month. His fist set out a framework of regulations for brick-and-mortar establishments, online gaming sites and sports betting within New York. That bill, known as S00017, proposes an 8.5% tax on sports betting’s gross revenue and the addition of 0.2% from each sportsbook operator’s handle.
New York’s casinos would be the only entities that could apply for licences to provide sports betting options, although they would also be restricted to the use of official league data for their betting markets. In this instance, professional sports leagues within the United States would then be able to submit any claims for a share of funds each year. This bill has also been submitted to the Committee.