Saturday February 28,2015 : PENNSYLVANIA ONLINE GAMBLING BILL IS FOR POKER ONLY (Update)
 
Full details of HB649 now available.
 
Full details on Representative John Payne's HB649 proposal to legalise online gambling within Pennsylvania's borders have now become available, and the disappointing news is that the measure covers only the legalization of online poker.
 
The full text of the Payne proposal can be accessed here:
 
http://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/PN/Public/btCheck.cfm?txtType=HTM&sessYr=2015&sessInd=0&billBody=H&billTyp=B&billNbr=649&pn=0748
 
Confining the scope of the bill to online poker throws into question the validity of Payne's pre-release claims that legalization will generate revenue of $120 million in the first year, rising exponentially thereafter, if the performance of other legalising states like New Jersey is taken into account.
 
Other features of the bill as reported Thursday morning are confirmed, but additionally observers have noted that the bill contains no "bad actor" restrictions, which is a positive development (so far). However, licensing is to be confined to existing holders of land gambling licenses in the state as previously reported.
 
There is provision for player pool sharing agreements with like-minded US states, and the minimum player age has been set at 21 years.
 
Rep. Payne has also set his sights on internet cafe "sweepstakes" style gambling, including in his measure provisions against owners offering gaming services, with stiff penalties attached.