New York State Senator Joseph Addabbo has once again taken a significant step towards legalizing online casino gaming and internet lottery in New York.
The latest legislative effort, Senate Bill S8185, introduced on January 11, refers to the New York Senate racing, gaming, and wagering committee.
This move represents a continuation of Addabbo’s persistent efforts, following a similar attempt in early 2023 with Bill S4856, which did not pass.
Addabbo Online Casino Legislation New York 2024
Key Features of the Bill
The bill proposes a framework for licensing, with three interactive gaming licenses available through a bidding process.
Eligible parties include established online sports betting operators, video lottery terminal parlors in New York, recognized tribes with amended gaming compacts, and land-based casinos, both existing and upcoming, in New York.
The New York State Gaming Commission will oversee the licensing, which requires participants to commit to an affirmative action program. In addition to online casino gaming, the bill also includes provisions for an internet lottery.
This would enable New Yorkers to participate in multi-jurisdiction and out-of-state lotteries online, with the New York State Division of Lottery managing online ticket sales.
Financial Aspects and Taxation
License holders will be subjected to a 31.5% tax on gross gaming revenue from iGaming. From the collected tax, $11 million is earmarked for gambling addiction treatment.
Additionally, each casino or operator awarded a license will have to pay a one-time fee of $2 million, with independent contractors providing iGaming platforms charged $1 million.
Emphasis on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI)
The bill highlights a focus on DEI, requiring applicants to adhere to an affirmative action program. This includes setting specific goals for employing minorities, women, and veterans in full-time, permanent positions.
Online Casinos Potential Economic Impact
Senator Addabbo has emphasized the significant revenue potential from online casino apps, estimating an annual generation of $475 million in tax revenue. This comes at a crucial time as the state grapples with a budget deficit.
The success of New York’s legal internet sports betting, which launched in 2022 grew to be the largest market in the US, sets a promising precedent.
Road Ahead for the Bill
The bill faces a critical path ahead, with the immediate next step being a review by the Senate’s Racing, Gaming, and Wagering Committee.
As New York’s legislative session extends into June, and with budget discussions prominent in the first quarter of 2024, the window for reaching an agreement on the legalization of mobile casino gaming is limited.
Senator Addabbo remains optimistic, viewing online gaming as a complement to brick-and-mortar casinos rather than a threat, and is dedicated to ensuring the bill addresses responsible gambling and benefits those affected by gambling addiction.
Senate Bill S8185 (2023) https://www.nysenate.gov/. Available at: https://www.nysenate.gov/legislation/bills/2023/S8185 (Accessed: 12 January 2024).
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