The state of Pennsylvania has been trying for some time to pass legislation to begin offering online poker gaming. The state is already a major player in the land based gambling industry, so it is no surprise that online poker gaming is on the table. Several measures have been introduced since last year and yet none have been able to move forward, passing into law.
According to Representative of the state, John Payne, his proposal HB 649, should be approved by the summer months. Payne is the chairman of the House Gaming Oversight Committee who approved the measure back in November by a wide margin of 18-8. In December, the House Appropriations Committee decided to add online gaming regulation to the budget proposal. However, the Senate was not on the same page and the bill stalled.
Payne has stated in the past that the state needs revenues and he feels that votes are not going be given to raise taxes during an election year. He feels that gaming online will be a component. It has been since 2013 that a state has approved online gambling legislation, with only Delaware, New Jersey and Nevada taking part. Pennsylvania wants to be the next and according to Payne, they will be approving the activity this year.
Everyone is ready for Pennsylvania to be involved in the industry from poker players to other states. 888 Poker operates gaming in all the states that have approved legislation and the company is ready to see Pennsylvania involved as well. With the large population, the state would make a great contribution to the player pool.
Apparently Pennsylvania regulators and New Jersey regulators have already been in talks on working together with online poker gaming. This would be a great decision since Nevada and Delaware already work together thanks to the Multi State Internet Gaming Agreement.
Overall, we simply have to wait and see how legislation progresses in the state. Hopefully, Payne prediction is correct and Pennsylvania will approve legislation to offer online poker gaming this year.
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