Tuesday June 23,2015 : CALIFORNIA SENATOR DODGES DEADLINE BULLET IN ONLINE POKER LEGALISATION MOVE
Inclusion of an urgency clause in SB278 neatly ducks last Friday's deadline which could have killed off the measure.
Procedure-savvy California Senator Isadore Hall saved his SB278 online poker legalization bill last Friday when he included an urgency clause, enabling it to survive a deadline which would have consigned it to failure this season.
And an unnamed source close to the Senator told local media that Hall is still intent on achieving a consensus among interested parties and progressing the measure, contrary to some unsubstantiated reports last week that he was prepared to let the bill lapse until next year.
Certainly the urgency clause gives the senator more flexibility and options, although it does not address the immediate problem of too many interested parties with disparate views, especially regarding "bad actor" and racetrack exclusions, from any legalised intrastate online poker market that might evolve.
At present Sen. Hall, who is chairman of the Government Organization Committee and therefore oversees gambling issues in the Senate, has not scheduled further hearings, but his energetic counterpart in the Assembly, Adam Gray has been more active.
Assemblyman Gray has scheduled another Assembly Government Organization Committee hearing for tomorrow (Wednesday) on his AB431 bill, and further hearings are planned later in the year to consider bills submitted by Assemblymen Mike Gatto and Reggie Sawyer-Jones.
AB431 has so far achieved the most success, surviving two committees, although it has yet to be voted on the floor . In the meantime, Gray has continued in his efforts to build consensus.
All face a September 2015 deadline for new bills to be progressed if they are to avoid another year of failure.