May 22, 2023 2 min read


Massachusetts Lawmakers Propose Small-Stake Senior Gambling Legalization

By legalizing small-stake gambling for senior centers, lawmakers seek to deliver excitement for the elderly

There are plenty of gambling options for residents of Massachusetts. From online and retail sports betting to racetracks and commercial casino gambling. While some may consider this plenty, others seek to expand the gambling options further by advocating for the legalization of small-stakes games for senior centers.

Recently, lawmakers in the state have filed two separate proposals, supporting the legalization of gambling for recreational games within senior centers. Such recreational games, otherwise popular as social games include pitch, bridge, hearts and poker, among other popular games among senior citizens.

While the idea sounds big, in reality, the activities won’t be anything even close to casino gambling. This is because the proposals seek to implement a cap for the sessions, as well as a maximum win per session. In other words, the proposals seek to change slightly the regulation, granting senior citizens the option for a slight thrill by gambling with real money.

There are two separate proposals that call for the aforementioned changes to the regulations. One of the proposals was pushed by State Rep. Brian Ashe, while the other one, was filed by State Rep. Angelo Puppolo. In essence, the two proposals call for the same thing, but the text of the bills differ slightly.

Ashe’s proposal, H.612, calls for the legalization of limited gambling for senior centers. It designates a limit of $5 for individual bets per session. At the same time, a limit of $20 per “single game or session” is applicable with a maximum win capped at $50.

Similarly, H.1724, the proposal filed by Puppolo calls for the legalization of gambling for small-stake games such as bridge, poker, dominos and other recreational games for senior centers.

Nobody’s going to become a millionaire (from the activity). It’s just a matter of being able to have a little more excitement for our seniors,

explained State Reps. Angelo Puppolo

During a public hearing last week, Puppolo’s proposal was up for discussion. Speaking about the proposed changes to the gambling legislation, he explained that the bill doesn’t seek to make anyone a millionaire. Instead, Puppolo said, the proposal wants to introduce thrill and excitement for seniors that like recreational games.


Jerome is a welcome new addition to the Gambling News team, bringing years of journalistic experience within the iGaming sector. His interest in the industry begun after he graduated from college where he played in regular local poker tournaments which eventually lead to exposure towards the growing popularity of online poker and casino rooms. Jerome now puts all the knowledge he's accrued to fuel his passion for journalism, providing our team with the latest scoops online.

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