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West Virginia Makes Move Towards Online Gambling with House Bill 3067

West Virginia Makes Move Towards Online Gambling with House Bill 3067

March 18, 2017 · Filed Under Gambler's Report, Online Gambling News 

West Virginia Introduces First Bill for Regulated Online Gambling

House Bill 3067 has recently been introduced into the state of West Virginia in an attempt to legalize online gambling activities. Mike Pushkin, Mike Bates, Shawn Fluharty, Joseph Canestraro and Sean Hornbuckle, are among the delegates to have sponsored the bill with hopes of “authorizing Internet gaming managed and licensed through existing authorized gaming facilities in West Virginia”. The bill is said to fall under the West Virginia Lottery Commission’s responsibilities regulations all relating to legalizing interactive gaming; providing legislative findings and establishing licensing requirements.

The bill will also allow gaming for states who are authorized for online gambling as well as prohibit strong or strict penalties for unlawful activities with up to $300,000 in fines and three years in prison for unlawful acts.

If the bill is approved, licensed facilities will be able to apply for an online license which will come with a tax rate of 14% towards all gross gaming revenues and a license fee of $50,000. Operators who are approved will be expected to set up their own policies and monitor its players.

Additional detailed information found in the bill include that all operators are responsible for making certain players are permissible to play, meaning residing in the state; as verification must be enforced that players are 21 years or older and protocols must be in place for responsible and problem gambling.

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Vietnam Looking at Legislation for Sports betting Once Again

Specific Types of Sports betting Activities May Get Legalization in Vietnam

Vietnam Looking at Legislation for Sports betting Once AgainIt’s been a process, and a long one at that with government officials working through the necessary steps to legalizing some types of gambling activities in the region. Plans were recently announced with forms of trial pertaining to land-based and online sports betting activities with wagering being permitted on dog and horse races.

According to recent reports this motion comes after a second proposed draft legislation was sent for approval. The Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc will need to approve the draft, and its being said he could do so sometime by the end of December or the beginning of next year.

Other provisions that are waiting on approval are allowing for two casinos to be constructed over a three-year period. It is said that this will be a “trial” period. If approved, all Vietnam nationals who are over the age of 21 and are in “good civil standing” will be allowed to wager on dog and horse races.

The initial proposal that was submitted said the minimum bet amount will be limited to $0.45. Ten years ago is when Vietnam seen its first gambling legislation. Provisions have been made making it more feasible for betting establishments to arbitrate from sports wagers.

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New York Passes Bill Legalizing Daily Fantasty Sports

New York Assembly Passes Legislation Legalizing Daily Fantasy Sports Throughout the US State of New York

New York Passes Bill Legalizing Daily Fantasty SportsFriday, the New York Assembly voted for daily fantasy sports activity in the state, and was approved. Operators in the state can now continue with offering contests to New York residents. Assembly members voted in favor of the measure with a 91-22 vote. The voting session concludes that daily fantasy sports activities are not related to gambling, and do not violate in any way of the state’s constitution.

The bill will have to be signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo. Cuomo only has 10 days to sign it into law. DFS operators who were active in the state prior to November 10th of last year will be able to temporarily offer their services while their application is being reviewed for approval.

All DFS operators who are approved will have to pay a 15% tax on all gross revenues and 0.5% additional tax that is said not to exceed $50,000. In addition to the taxes there will also be safeguards to help protect NY state players which include:

  • Restricting players under the age of 18 from participating
  • Ensure that the accurate odds of winning are actually represented in all advertisements
  • enabling players to permanently exclude themselves from future games (and potential losses) at any time
  • Identifying highly experienced players on the platform

Assemblyman J. Gary Pretlow, Chairman of the Assembly’s Racing and Wagering Committee commented:

“We concluded this is not gambling. This is not a violation of the constitution.” “The legislative findings in this legislature are that this is not gambling, and therefore not subject to the provisions of the constitution. Three and a half million New Yorkers want to participate in these games,” he added.

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MGM Speaks Up Again, Supports Online Poker in NY

June 6, 2016 · Filed Under Online Gambling News, Online Poker News 

MGM Supports Online Poker in New York – A Creation of Safe, Legal Environment to Protect from Unregulated Off Shore Poker Operators

MGM Speaks Up Again, Supports Online Poker in NYMGM Resorts in Nevada made it known they support online poker in New York. They said they are optimistic about regulations getting passed in the near future. A bill has been introduced and has advanced out of the Senate just waiting its final vote.

Ever since Pennsylvania started considering online casinos, New York expressed their interest in online poker. New Jersey’s record revenues also played a part in the decision to try and get it approved. Since MGM acquired 50% of Boyd Gaming’s stake in the Borgata, and with Nevada’s governor really wanting to pool the poker player base, now would be the perfect time for the Empire State to get on the ball and get online poker regulated.

General Counsel for MGM, John McManus released a statement Thursday saying,

“This legislation recognizes that millions of New Yorkers play online poker on unregulated and unprotected off-shore poker websites that operate with no oversight, fraud controls, or age restrictions. We applaud the Senate Finance Committee’s vote to create a safe, legal environment for online poker through legislation that will generate tens of millions of dollars in revenue for taxpayers, and create open and fair opportunities for all providers of online poker.”

A recent poll that the MGM conducted expressed that more than 70% of New York citizens “agree that safe, regulated online poker should be legal.”

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Pennsylvania Pushes for Legalizing Gambling Expansion

May 17, 2016 · Filed Under Online Gambling Laws, Online Gambling News 

Pennsylvania Won’t See Consideration for Legalized Online Gambling Expansion Until June  2016

Pennsylvania Pushes for Legalizing Gambling ExpansionIt looks like June is when consideration will be given by the House to legalize online gambling in Pennsylvania. According to news reports, the bill was considered last year. Rep. John Payne, the bill’s creator, didn’t make do last year with it being pushed through legislation, so now it has to be discussed once again.

When it was discussed last year it was put on ‘hold’ until sometime this spring. Legislation wants all 12 of the state’s existing land-based casinos to be licensed for online operators. With New Jersey setting new records for the month of April amounting to $17 million for just one month, there is plenty of opportunity for Pennsylvania to do the same, once it becomes approved and legalized.

Pennsylvania launched its land-based casino industry 10 years ago, back in 2006 with a win worth more than $31 million. Revenue records for table games was set in March with the state winning just $5.2 million from poker alone.

State gambling regulators said that just in 2015 the Keystone State was up by $3.17 billion. This amount was an all-time high with the state. If online gambling is regulated it is projected that this amount will peak at about 10% with online sales.

Supporter of the gambling expansion includes, Rep. Nick Kotik, D-Allegheny, the ranking Democrat on the House Gaming Oversight Committee, who stated to a panel of three Penn National executives:

“I would like to engage the casino industry in a conversation about enacting a comprehensive bill so if and when the time comes that this is overturned by the Supreme Court that we’re ready and can move forward.”

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Maryland DFS Bill Fails Legislation

April 14, 2016 · Filed Under Gambler's Report, Online Gambling Laws, Online Gambling News 

Maryland DFS is Still Up in the Air After Legislation Fails to Pass Sports Fantasy Bill

Maryland DFS Bill Fails LegislationDaily Fantasy sports is still up in the air in the state of Maryland after state legislature didn’t pass legislation Monday. The House failed to take action after the state Senate Mike Miller asked the attorney general to take legal action against FanDuel and DraftKings, two of the largest DFS operators.

Two bills (SB0976 and SB0980) were pushed through last month and passed, but the House didn’t vote on either bill leaving everything up in the air, and DFS activities still illegal in the state. Rumors are that it could be around a year before DFS is brought up again.

The two bills that were on the docket would have asked the state if DFS should be regulated and the other if voters didn’t approve the referendum it would ban all DFS activities. Both of the bills were scheduled originally were to be heard last week, but neither one went as far as being voted on.

Legislature doesn’t meet now until 2017, and since legislation is calling for a referendum of the voters it will be a long while until the matter is heard again. This could be good and bad news for the DFS industry. Good since it wasn’t voted on to ban activities, and bad because now DFS players have to wait to bet on DFS until next year sometime.

Marylands two bills under consideration were the SB0980, Gaming – Traditional Noncommercial Fantasy Competitions – Clarification and SB0976, Commercial Daily Fantasy Sports – Authorization and Regulation.

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Massachusetts Lottery Considering Online Gaming Options

January 5, 2016 · Filed Under Daily Fantasy Sports, Lottery, Online Gambling News 

Massachusetts Lottery May Be the Next State to Offer Fantasy Sports and Online Games as it Explores Options

Massachusetts Lottery Considering Online Gaming OptionsThe Massachusetts Lottery Commission announced it has started to collect information on the fantasy sports and online lottery industry. As part of a potential legalization of online activities, the request for information could possibly lead into the state offering the two gaming activities.

The Lottery Commission says they will invite different organizations to “submit proposals for the development, implementation, operational support, and maintenance of a Massachusetts Lottery iLottery System…and the development and integration of digital versions of existing and new lottery games including but not limited to social gaming and daily fantasy sports options.”

The Massachusetts Lottery is looking into the how’s of player account registration, management and authentication as well as web-based wagering and how payment systems operate.

Gaming systems that allow for cross-pollination between online applications and physical retailer space and any other progressive gaming opportunities that may be available,” is another point of interest the Commission expressed additional more information on.

Recently, Treasurer Deborah Goldberg, warned officials that changes would be necessary if the state wants to compete with the state’s rising casino gaming industry and daily fantasy sports events.

To generate additional revenue for the state the organization is considering legalizing fantasy sports betting, and is why Attorney General Maura Healey proposed regulations for DFS back in November.

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RAWA – A Casino in Every Smartphone Hearing

Information Only RAWA Hearing, A Casino in Every Smartphone – Law Enforcement Implications Concluded in Washington

RAWA - A Casino in Every Smartphone HearingLast week a RAWA – Restoration of America’s Wire Act hearing was conducted to examine how the 2011 DOJ OLC memo might bring the possibility of there being a casino in every smartphone around the country. The hearing took place in Washington DC covering all aspects of the online gambling sector in the United States. Jason Chaffetz served as the Chairman during the hearing for the United States House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

Chaffetz is a big supporter of RAWA, and his role was a crucial part of the hearing. Chaffetz as well as many other important witnesses that included republicans, democrats, members of Congress, attended and were able to discuss in detail RAWA and speak about the legalization of online poker. The witnesses that did attend pushed the issue for an overall ban and to show support of RAWA.

“With (online) gaming there are lots of issues other than just location… (it also) has to do with your age. It has to do with your intoxication (level). It has to do with a whole host of things that CAN be addressed with somebody in person at a physical facility.” – Chairman Chaffetz (R-UT)

During the hearing two main issues were discussed as the first brought about the opinionated comments on whether or not in-state online gambling would be a risk to players, law enforcement and other relevant parties compared to land-based gambling.

“I was alarmed to find out that nearly 40% of all online gamblers make less than $50,000. In fact, 14% make less than $25,000 … 54% of all online gamblers are minorities, which obviously should cause us some concern because many of these wonderful people live in some of these poorer communities.” – Rep. Walker (R-NC)

Secondly, the issue of software prevention for residents living in states that do not offer legalized gaming. One of the main focus points addressed in the hearing was that,

“States have a sovereign right to determine gambling policy within their borders. The internet is borderless in nature and threatens states’ ability to regulate gambling transactions within its jurisdiction.”

The hearing, overall, concluded with several RAWA opponents winning their opinion of legislation with quite a few Congress members showing their support for individual in-state determination.

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Current Updates for Online Gambling in Ukraine

December 7, 2015 · Filed Under Online Gambling Laws, Online Gambling News 

Online Gambling Finally Legalized in Ukraine as New Bill Outlines Legalization for Regulations by Finance Ministry

Current Updates for Online Gambling in UkraineUkraine’s Ministry of Finance has published legalization for regulations on gambling throughout the second biggest country in Europe. The bill has passed that ends a six year ban on all forms of gambling in the region. Ukraine banned gambling back in 2009 so legalizing it again is a great milestone for the country itself and players.

Regulators approved the bill with some stipulations. One of the stipulations is that all companies that are legalized in Ukraine who possess more than $2 million in capital will be eligible to submit an application for a license. There will only be one lottery operator created, and a one year license would cost land-based operators up to EUR 1 million, or EUR 1.5 million for online services.

The Draft Law, the bill that was passed for regulated gambling states that the state owned National Service for Gambling will be responsible for issuing each license to private operators and will be responsible for organizing gambling in the country. Several different executive power bodies including the Ministry of Finance will be responsible for the state’s financial, budgetary, taxation and all custom policies that pertain to gambling and lottery.

Bookies will be allowed to operate online, but all bookmaker offices will be restricted to gaming zones specified by the Ministry of Finance.

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Switzerland New Legislation of Online Gambling Services

October 25, 2015 · Filed Under Casinos, Online Gambling News 

Switzerland Lawmakers Consider Approving Legalization of Online Gambling as Land Based Casino’s May See Approval to Launch Internet Casino’s

Switzerland New Legislation of Online Gambling ServicesSwitzerland lawmakers are considering legalizing online gambling according to a news media outlet. A new bill was submitted to the parliament this week although in draft form many believe it’s a step in the right direction bringing then closer to regulation, giving residents hope of enjoying the benefits of playing online. Details of the bill includes instructions of approving 21 brick and mortar casinos to offer online gambling.

Online gambling is currently illegal in the country, but residents do gamble online at foreign or unregulated sites. Other things included in the bill are to allow profitable poker games outside of casinos. These games would be permissible for low stakes, but the low stakes restriction hasn’t been explained yet.

Legalizing online gambling would help the country’s revenues. Since 2007 the country has seen a 30% decrease with gambling revenues. Poker was reviewed as a game of luck back in 2010 when Switzerland’s Federal Council supported the Supreme Court ruling. This meant that no poker games were allowed if it was outside land-based casino operations.

Provisions of the bill, if passed, approved and put into law would help reassure all of the benefits of online gambling and the meaning of Article 106 of the Constitution. New legislations would enable operators to offer lottery games in a responsible, profitable and attractive manner.

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