State-by-State Approval of Online Gambling a Possibility in the US

As the US Congress has different opinions on legalizing online gambling, each state will approve it independently, predicted a panel at a casino conference held on Thursday. Attending political leaders and casino operators stated that this is likely to happen in the next 2 years. One of the few states working towards this is New Jersey, which intends to become the fore-runner in the area of internet gambling. The state legislature is doing all it can to create a bill that will help it legalize online gambling.

According to US Digital Gaming chairman, Richard Bronson, the US government is unlikely to pass a federal law. He believes that the Congress, which rarely has a unanimous opinion on any issue, will not agree on what will help online gambling operators provide betting opportunities on the internet to Americans.

States May Develop Own Internet Gambling Laws

Bronson stated that the lack of a unanimous opinion will push states in the US to pass their own internet gambling laws. This will be along the lines of what was, when the states approved lotteries. 43 of them now have state lotteries, though there is no national lottery. Bronson is sure that in the next year, at least one state will do approve online gambling.

New Jersey, which is one among them, passed its online gambling legislature in 2011. Had Governor Christie not vetoed it, New Jersey would have been the first state in the US to approve online gambling intra-state. His arguments were constitutionality and the possibility of computer wagering centers opening illegally. Following this, legislators made a few changes to the bill, hoping it will alleviate the governor’s concerns. The bill will most likely be passed end of June.

Another state looking to make the most of an online gambling market likely to open up soon, is Delaware. It created a bill allowing online gambling in the state and sent it to the state house where it was voted on. Thursday, the House Gaming and Parimutuels Committee voted in favor of the gambling law. They faced objections from advocates against gambling and the harness racing sector in the state.

Governor Jack Markell proposed that in addition to table and slots games, online casinos should expand their offerings to include keno, (which will be provided on at least a hundred sites in Delaware) and sports wagering on NFL (to be offered at 20 additional sites).

New Jersey Loses Out on the Chance to Earn Several Millions of Dollars

New Jersey Senator Raymond Lesniak, who is in favor of legalizing online gambling in New Jersey, stated that as a result of the bill being vetoed, they lost out on several millions of dollars they could have earned from allowing gambling operations to start in Atlantic City last year. According to Bronson, there is a big, potential online gambling market in the US. Supporting this, he stated that 40 million people, went to Las Vegas in 2011. Of them, at least a few million from the US will take to internet gambling if they get the chance to. This is possible only if the casino industry opens up opportunities that allow them to gamble on the internet.

Possibility of Legalization Generates a Lot of Interest in the US

Eugene Johnson, a top-level associate at an Atlantic City based consulting firm for casinos, Spectrum Gaming Group, stated that numerous gambling operators interested in positioning themselves for when online gambling is legalized, have approached his company for help. This shows that the operators are interested in making the most of the opportunities that will come up in the gambling industry in the US. He is sure that there is no doubt that online gambling will be legalized. The only uncertainty is when this will happen. Johnson stated that in a few years, internet gambling at the state level will be a reality.

Paddy Power North America’s president, Eamonn Toalnd mentioned that the online betting company is interested in entering the gambling industry in the US. The interest is based on the company’s understanding that the US gambling market is likely to open up. Irrespective of whether this happens at the federal or state level, there will be a lot of opportunities for offline operators to join hands with companies in the online world.

According to Johnson, a large part of the future of land-based casinos lies in the online gambling wave taking over the US and the rest of the world. Young people will make up the majority of those who opt for online gambling services. Proof of this lies in the fact that most of the people currently visiting offline casinos are older. Young people prefer to either gamble online via their PC or mobiles. He said that gambling companies should either cash-in on the latest trends or risk being left behind.

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