FRANTIC POLITICAL ACTIVITY ON NEW YORK DAILY FANTASY SPORTS BILL (Update)
With just a day left of this years Assembly session in New York, lobbyists and lawmakers search for a compromise.
New York media reports indicate that lobbyists and lawmakers are currently under pressure from todays (Thursday) legislative deadline as they try to build a deal that will legalise daily fantasy sports betting in the state,
Current legalization in the Assembly seeks to regulate and tax fantasy games while clarifying that they are not considered illegal gambling under state law.
But the Legislature adjourns June 16 (today), and state AG Eric Schneiderman is likely to enforce his opinion that DFS is illegal under state law , permanently excluding DFS companies from lucrative operations in New York.
At present an uneasy truce exists between the AG and leading DFS firms DraftKings and FanDuel, which have agreed to suspend operations in New York to give lawmakers an opportunity to legalise the genre.
New York is the industry’s second-largest market, producing an estimated $267 million in entry fees in 2015, according to industry analyst firm Eilers & Krejcik Gaming.
News late Wednesday from New York indicated that a compromise has been achieved by legislators in the Senate and Assembly racing and wagering committees. This would reportedly class DFS games as games of skill under the authority of the New York Gaming Commission, with tax returns allocated to state education.
Assembly Racing and Wagering Committee chairman Gary Pretlow told reporters late Wednesday that the deal had been achieved through a collaborative effort involving both Senate and Assembly, but it remained uncertain whether the bill would pass muster with rank-and-file legislators in both houses and with state Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
The draft contains provisions for a tax on GGR of 15 percent and a 0.5 percent of GGR as a licensing fee.
“They may have a language agreement on daily fantasy sports but I still have to check and see if there are Democrats who support the legalization and thats what were doing,” said Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie.
Governor Cuomo will also have to sign off on any bill agreed by the Legislature.
And the deadline clock is ticking….