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Velimir Velichkov January 8, 2024 3 min read
New York: Sen. Joseph Addabbo Reintroduces iGaming Proposal
If greenlighted, the proposal would legalize online lotteries along with online table games and slots
Several US states currently offer legal online gambling activities. The list includes New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Michigan, West Virginia, Delaware and Connecticut. While Rhode Island is expected to launch its legal iGaming market this April, efforts in New York state continue. Last week, State Sen. Joseph Addabbo, a long-term supporter of the gambling expansion in the state, reintroduced a bill, proposing the legalization of iGaming across New York.
The proposal, SB 856, is the same bill that was introduced last year. Besides online gambling, SB 856 proposes the legalization of online lotteries, paving the way for New Yorkers to buy tickets for lotteries such as Mega Millions or Powerball online. When it comes to online gambling, the bill proposes the legalization of online table games and slots.
If the proposal is approved and signed into law by Gov. Kathy Hochul, New York would join the growing list of states that offer legal online gambling activities. A major benefit of iGaming would be the tax revenue that will be raised for New York. Per the recently reintroduced proposal, operators that want to offer online gambling activities would be subject to a 30.5% tax. Besides taxes, iGaming operators would be subject to a $2 million one-time license fee.
The proposed iGaming bill comes after a few years ago, Addabbo supported the legalization of sports betting in New York. His efforts resulted in the legalization of online and retail sports wagering, activities that continue to raise taxes for the state to this day.
Proceeds from Online Gambling to Benefit Education
If New York legalizes iGaming, the revenue from the activity would benefit the Lottery Fund in the state. This fund provides vital financing toward education across the state. The reintroduced bill comes at a time when the state anticipates a staggering $4.3 billion deficit for 2024, a number that may grow to $8 billion for next year.
In an opinion piece published by City & State New York in December, Sen. Addabbo highlighted the benefits of legal iGaming. He explained that while the state faces a “looming budget deficit,” it is unacceptable that hundreds of millions of dollars spent on iGaming leave New York or fill the pockets of illegal gambling operators.
Addabbo argued that the money spent on iGaming can remain in the state, benefiting public schools or different education programs. When it comes to projections, he revealed that a regulated iGaming market in the state may bring $1 billion annually.
Under SB 856, sports betting operators would have a chance to apply for an iGaming license. Additionally, the bill allows racinos and tribal operators to be able to apply for an online gambling license, efforts that can create a robust and competitive market. With the bill reintroduced for the new legislative season, the matter is now in the hands of New York lawmakers.