HOPES HIGH FOR ONLINE GAMBLING IN PENNSYLVANIA
 
Senior senator says gambling expansion bill has support and could be passed within the next two months.
 
Pennsylvania state politicians have wasted no time in getting back to work in the new legislative season, and there is renewed hope for a gambling expansion bill that includes online gambling and daily fantasy sports.
 
The positive outlook comes from the new chairman of the Community, Economic and Recreational Development Committee in the Senate, Senator Mario Scavello who told local reporters this week that he was confident that within the next two months a bill would be approved by both the state House and the Senate.
 
Whether that bill would be the recently introduced measure authored by Senator Jay Costa  or a new one introduced by the Republicans in the Senate, is not clear.
 
Our readers will recall that Costa's bill is essentially the same as HB1887 which passed the House but ran out of time in the Senate last year. Costa's bill has higher license fees and tax implications, but its provisions are virtually the same and include intrastate online gambling and daily fantasy sports legalization.
 
More pressure for passage perhaps applies at present, given the unpredictability of the new Trump federal administration and the urgent need to plug a state budget deficit with new revenues.
 
Scavello revealed that there was support for a new bill, certainly as far as online gambling licensing and regulation is concerned.