The Fate of Pennsylvania’s Online Gambling Bill More Uncertain Now Than Ever, $31 Billion Spending Bill Becomes Law
Online gambling in Pennsylvania is still in the midst of uncertainty with the fate of the online gambling bill still undecided. Sunday, Governor Tom Wolf announced that he was going to let the $31 billion spending bill become law without his signature. The bill was passed by legislature back on June 30.
Governor Wolf made the announcement about 30 hours before the midnight deadline on Monday. Although, Legislature hasn’t come up with a funding package that is acceptable, Wolf strongly believes that the majority leaders, Republicans, will make their promises good by putting together a $1.3 million revenue package to help support the spending bill.
Governor Wolf said that some of the ideas suggested by Republicans about moving funds around are not temporary fixes and that the ideas “will not move Pennsylvania forward, nor will it pay for this budget.”
The $1.3 million revenue package includes a $1 per pack cigarette tax increase, and will rely mainly on the casino gambling expansions. Pennsylvania is so close yet so far. If passed and approved, it will be the fourth state to offer online gambling. The bill is sitting on the Senates desk.
Mississippi’s Bobby Moak Is Hoping Third Time is the Charm as State Becomes Third in US to Push for Online Gambling
A new year means state legislatures are back in session and gearing up for the 2015 era in online gambling. It will also be the third time in four years that Bobby Moak has submitted an online gambling bill. State Representative’s are wasting zero time with the attainment for his efforts and his project of pushing for the regulation of online gambling to become legalized in the state. Moak’s bill “The Mississippi Lawful Internet Gaming Act of 2015” was reintroduced to the house committee making them the third US state to push for legalization of online gambling.
House Bill No. 306: The Mississippi Lawful Internet Gaming Act is a 74-page compilation containing results from a comprehensive study of internet gambling governed by the Executive Director of the Mississippi Gaming Commission, Allen Godfrey.
This isn’t Moak’s first go around, or the introduction of his gambling bill. The start of 2015 and the reintroduction of Moak’s Bill, marks for the fourth consecutive year with hopes of it becoming the first approval by the committee.
The deadline for the bill to clear the house and for possibility of it passing on down to the senate is set for February 23rd2015. All of the previous attempts have stalled, but all hope isn’t lost this time around. The Task Force that was created by the Mississippi House Gaming Committee Chairman of the eight member group to perform studies of online gambling were supposed to turn in the results of the study and so far have not done so, causing the lack of support being seen.
If Moak wants to be successful in selling online gambling legalization in the state, arguments with the bolstering market in New Jersey needs to be convincing enough to consider the gaming expansion in the state.
The headlines this morning in regards to online poker seemed to have an extra pep as I went through my usual perusal of news. The buzz in the US state of NJ was that of Governor Christie’s conditional veto of the online gambling bill this past Thursday, the difference this time is hope, hope that after the bill is amended approval would come as soon as Spring 2013.
The amendments the Governor is seeking include a 10% to 15% increase in tax revenues, a 10 year trial period and better funding for problem gambler assistance. Christie’s comments in regards to the amendments left many hopeful, as the NJ Governor commented,
“Now is the time for our state to move forward, again leading the way for the nation, by becoming one of the first states to permit Internet gaming,” Christie wrote. “While Atlantic City’s reputation and stature as one of the premier resort destinations on the East Coast are well-chronicled, it is no secret that revenue from the region’s most important industries, gaming and tourism, has been in decline.”
How Will Online Gambling Help NJ
In recent thoughts of the devastation that overcame the state many are hoping that the state will legitimize and profits will restore a state in need of rejuvenation. Shares of Caesars Entertainment surged 32% to $13.25 in recent trading, while Boyd Gaming rose 8.4% to $7.70 after the Governor spoke last week. Analysts believe that $250 million to $1 billion in revenue annually will boost the fallen casino revenue of $5.2 billion to just over $3 billion last year.
New Jersey could join Nevada and Delaware as the only states to have legalized online poker if indeed the amendments to the online gambling bill are signed into to law by the Governor in spring.
Tournaments, the Winners Are…
Remi Castaignon, the 29 year old Frenchman and mortgage broker has propelled himself to a higher poker status as he dominated the EPT Deauville main event. Coming in with more than three times the chips as is opponents, the young, confident player from Saint-Aunix-Lengros, a commune in the Gers department in southwestern France won a €770,000 first place prize to claim his first title.
In related Pokerstars news, the International Gaming Awards honored PokerStars with the “Online Poker Operated of the Year” award. PokerStars was among 15 nominees for the distinction of the being the best global poker operator.
“This has been a year of great achievement for PokerStars, and this award is recognition of the hard work and dedication of our employees around the world who are setting the standard for quality in the industry,” said Eric Hollreiser, PokerStars Head of Corporate Communications.
Viktor “Isildur1” Blom is not sitting pretty according to HighstakesDB.com reporting the Swedish player has about $1.5 million in earnings for 2013 losing $3.6 million of the $5million winnings. However, his Full Tilt team mate Tom “durrrr” Dwan on the other hand has won over &2 million in the past 48hours at the $250/$500 PLO tables where he won over half a million dollars, including a $394k win at table Cathy yesterday afternoon in just 81 hands playing against the likes of Ben “Bttech86” Tollerene, Phil “OMGClayAiken” Galfond and patpatpanda.
More PokerStars News
Pokerstars is rewarding you for living in the fantastical and alluring part of the world many call home, home would be Asia, Australia, and New Zealand! Players from Asia, Australia, and New Zealand are now able to partake in the ANZOPS, or better known as the “Australia & New Zealand Online Poker Series.”
Australia and New Zealand can get their hands on a share of more than $120,000 in tournament guarantees and exclusive Leader Board prizes. That’s ten events running over ten days, the ANZOPS guarantees $120,000 across all events with $7,000 available in the ANZOPS leader board.
Buy-ins start from just $5.50 and the highlight of the series will be a $50,000 guaranteed Main Event on Sunday, February 17.
And last but not least, here is a word from APCW on the latest NJ online gambling bill, industry news around the globe in the usual J Todd flair…
NJ keeps on moving ahead with its pursuit of online gambling with the latest approval by the panel’s advancement of a bill which would allow Atlantic City’s casinos to offer online gambling.
Bill A2578 was released by the Assembly Budget and Appropriations Committee Monday, clearing the way for a full vote by the Assembly.
Many supporters of the bill are hoping it will boost revenues for Atlantic City’s casinos, which have suffered from repeated declines as gambling expands in neighboring Pennsylvania, New York, Delaware and Maryland.
“Most everything has migrated to the internet and taken advantage of the consumer and revenue options it offers and New Jersey’s gaming industry should be no different,” said Assemblyman Vincent Prieto (D-Hudson), a sponsor of Bill A2578.
In addition to online gambling, the state plans to move forward with sports betting, as reported earlier this month, even though Gov. Chris Christie expects federal authorities to sue to try to block it because federal law does not allow it in New Jersey.
On Monday, the S3019 measure, which Authorizes Internet wagering at Atlantic City casinos under certain circumstances has been postponed. Initially it was scheduled to be heard in Assembly and Senate committees tomorrow and voted on in full sessions of both houses Monday; however, Sen. Ray Lesniak decided to have his measure passed through the Assembly and Senate before the final day of the current legislative session on January 9.
“Speaking with Governor Christie, I’ve agreed to reintroduce Internet gaming in the next legislative session, and I expect that we can get it through the Legislature and signed by the Governor within the first few weeks of the new session,” state Sen. Raymond Lesniak (D-Union) said in a statement this evening.
“I believe that Internet gaming has transformational potential for New Jersey’s gaming industries. While I remain hopeful that New Jersey can take the lead on this exciting new direction for wagering, which would result in new revenues, new jobs and new economic activity in the Garden State, I recognise that the complex issues surrounding Internet wagering will take more time to iron out than we are afforded in the waning days of the current legislative session.
“This isn’t a question of if New Jersey gets Internet wagering but when and my money is on soon.”
This month President Obama put into law the 2011 Budget Control Act and assigned a Super Committee with the job of raising $1.5 Trillion. This Congressional committee is made up of six Republicans and six Democrats who are working together and need to find a way to bring down the deficit and help restore the economy in the USA. One of the most outstanding advantages of this new Super Committee is the extraordinary power these 12 men and women will have, including writing a bill the no one can amend or filibuster. With this new committee there’s a real chance for online gambling to finally be tabled and passed without interruption of any kind from neither the Senate or House of Representatives!
Some of the members of this new group are some well-known advocates for online gambling. The Poker Players Alliance as well as Senator Harry Reid has both vocalized their confidence in this Super Committee and the legalization of online gambling in the US. One problem that may arise though is if this committee lumps all of online gambling into one bill. Online poker players are hoping that a bill to legalize just poker is presented alone which would give it a much better chance of being approved and passed than if the entire online gambling sector is presented as one bill. Barney Frank is well aware of how hard it has been to get the entire industry legalized because of the speculation of gambling being a game of chance and poker being a game of skill. There have been numerous research projects and committees that have been against online casinos but in favor of online poker.
Another member of this Super Committee is Senate Minority Whip, Senator Jon Kyl who was one of the loudest advocates for the UIGEA bill back in 2006 and its passage as a bill, however recently this same Senator had announced on his personal website that he would consider passing legislation for an online poker only bill. With Senator Kyl seriously considering passing an online poker bill and this Super Committee seriously tackling the deficit, and then legalizing online poker and possible gambling as a whole we may see the light of day by year’s end!
Even if online poker or gambling is not passed this year, the Super Committee has unprecedented power for the next ten years and a lot can be changed, added and passed in the legislation. Online poker is definitely a topic that the Super Committee will be discussing and Casino Scam Report will be on top of any breaking news.
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