Thursday, January 31, 2013 : MORE DETAIL ON PENNSYLVANIA PLAN FOR INTERNET GAMBLING (Update)
But it could be an expensive licence…
Our readers may recall an advisory in October last year in which Pennsylvania Representative Tina Davis co-sponsored a bill to close a loophole in the state's gambling law by prohibiting Internet sweepstakes cafés, at the same time floating the idea of an entry into the online gambling sector.
The issue surfaced again last week in a memo dated January 25 2013 at: http://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/…cosponId=11316, which reprised the advisory with interesting detail on Davis' proposal to amend the Pennsylvania Gaming Act.
Davis stresses the need for action, bearing in mind that neighbouring states like New Jersey and Delaware have already achieved legislative approval for online gambling legalization initiatives.
If Pennsylvania is to maintain its position as the second biggest gambling revenues generator in the USA, it needs to stay ahead of the innovation curve, she opines.
She suggests that the state Gaming Control Board would be responsible for both regulation and licensing, which will not come cheaply.
Her proposal punts a licensing application fee of $16.7 million, and seeks to establish a "reasonable tax rate that takes into account overhead and cost of operation for the casinos."
The proceeds from internet gaming would be split between the Pennsylvania Property Tax Relief Fund and the State Lottery Fund.
"Considering the nationwide efforts to legalize internet gaming, it is imperative that we maintain the integrity of our gaming industry amid inevitable federal preemption and competing states, as well as possible expansion of internet games through the privatization of our own State Lottery," Davis concludes.
"A responsible internet gaming system must be created in order to protect Pennsylvanians and the success of the established gaming industry in the Commonwealth, which has generated more than $7 billion in state tax revenue, and created more than 16,000 jobs statewide."