Posts Tagged ‘legislation’

What Does 2011 Have In Store For Online Poker Legislation?

Thursday, January 6th, 2011

2011 not only ushered in a new, much more Republican Congress, but also ushered in new questions in the poker community about online poker legislation. With the start of the New Year, all hopes of 2010 poker legislation being passed have been wiped clean. Is there any chance that the new government will recognize online poker as a legitimate activity, like investing in the stock market or trading options?

Up until now Barney Frank has served as the chairman of the House Financial Services Committee. Frank had a very strong positive attitude towards the passage of online poker legislation and gave the Poker Players Alliance (PPA) some hope. However, the committee is now chaired by republican Spencer Bachus from Alabama, who seems to be very unyielding on his opposition of online gambling.

Executive director of the PPA, John Pappas, hopes that Senator Harry Reid from Nevada will help to conduct federal legislation in the field of online gambling. He says, “I think it’s clear that Senator Reid will continue to be a major player on this issue. Any time the Senate Majority Leader takes notice on an issue, we will need to continue working with his office. If his bill is leading the way, that means the House becomes kind of a secondary body for us to work in. I think for sure the Financial Services Committee will no longer be the leading body in this jurisdiction.”

But will Reid be enough to have online poker recognized as legal? Only time will tell, and it should be quite interesting to follow coverage on this matter as the year progresses.

Internet Gambling Regulation and Tax Enforcement Act Back on the Scene

Wednesday, March 31st, 2010

For those of you who are following the introduction of various online poker and Internet gambling legslation in Congress, Representative Jim McDermott’s Internet Gambling Regulation and Tax Enforcement Act was reintroduced last week.

This act serves as a companion to Barney Frank’s bill to overturn the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) of 2006. The UIGEA has not outlawed online poker or gambling. However, it puts strict regulations on banks, credit card companies and online payment services, which has caused a lot of problems for online poker players in the United States.

Barney Frank’s bill has set guidelines for licensing and regulation of the online gambling industry, suggesting that online gambling operators will be required to collect certain fees and pay certain taxes. The Internet Gambling Regulation and Tax Enforcement Act states what those fees and taxes will be. The new version, which was introduced last week, establishes not only a federal license fee but a state license fee as well. Additionally, it states that 25% of federal revenue gleaned from online gambling will go towards foster care programs, which is an issue that McDermott strongly supports.

McDermott hopes to gain more support for this bill after Frank’s bill is marked up in the coming months by the House Financial Services Committee. If these bills are passed, it should make things much easier for online poker players in the United States.

Is Intrastate Online Poker the New Thing?

Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010

Today in Florida a bill was filed that will potentially legalize online gambling within the state. The bill, named the Internet Poker Consumer Protection and Revenue Generation Act of 2010 (HB 1441), would ensure the protection of consumers while recognizing and regulating intrastate Internet poker sites.

The bill was filed by Florida’s democratic State Representative Joseph Abruzzo. Abruzzo expects the bill will generate over $200 million per year, as over 900,000 Floridians are estimated to gamble online. An additional source of tax revenue is vital in Florida, as the state is currently facing a deficit worth more than $3.2 billion. The bill also states that Florida would collect a fee of $500,000 from Internet poker operators in the state, as well as 20 percent of the sites’ monthly revenues. Online poker players must be at least 21 years old as well as present in the state of Florida while playing.

If HB 1441 is passed it will go into effect on July 1 of this year. Florida is not the only state that is considering passing pro-online poker legislation. The states of New Jersey, California and Iowa, as well as a number of other states, are also considering opening up to the idea of intrastate poker. Legalizing online poker is proving to be a great way to increase revenues during the country’s current economic troubles. I, for one, am interested to see how long it will be before online poker is legalized and regulated throughout the entire United States.