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California offered a chance at Online Poker

Written By: PokerNet.com | May 16, 2012 | Posted In Poker News

The push for the legalization of internet online poker is growing ever stronger as the states beginning to stress over possible infrastructure funding cuts. In a move that could greatly strengthen the chances of online poker hitting the US once again, casino operators are offering state leaders a cut of the profits from internet poker, as long as they help to legalize it in the state of California. This proposal comes as a possible round of cuts from schools and social services are expected to be around the corner.

It has taken almost two years of hearings and studies. The proponents who remain very influential and generous political contributors believe that their chances are greatly expanding and that everything is working out as hope. The California Senate leader this year is putting forth their support in co-sponsoring legislation for state treasury funding ranging in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

Obama has also stated that Federal Law does not prevent states from allowing some forms of internet gambling, allowing more freedom in the movement towards online poker.

“It gives California lawmakers a green light,” said Whittier Law School professor I. Nelson Rose, an expert on the gambling industry.

The U.S. Department of Justice’s opinion has given impetus to states on the issue of online poker wagers. It is estimated by experts that more than $40 billion could be received annually from the U.S. taken from overseas companies not regulated or tax imposed.

Bills to legalize online poker have already surfaced in Iowa, New Jersey, Hawaii, Mississippi and Florida. Nevada has also recently passed legislation that would allow internet poker as soon as federal permission is passed.

“We’re seeing a momentum building,” stated John Pappas, the executive director of the Poker Players Alliance (national gamblers group).

The gambling industry currently sees California as the hot ticket when aiming for online internet gambling. It is estimated that 2 million state residents play Internet poker, according to the California Online Poker Assn., which remains as a coalition of 46 casino operators who are leading the charge towards the legalization of internet poker gambling.

“Today, the state of California is the leading Internet gaming market in the world,” said Sen. Roderick Wright (D-Inglewood), co-author of the legalization bill. He made his statements during a USC conference on gambling in March. “The only thing is, we make no money and we have no (consumer) protections for our citizens who play.”

Senate leader Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento) said that their joint proposal is aiming to raise at least $200 million for the budget year that begins in July 2012. He also stated that legalization “s worthwhile only if it’s a means to generate significant revenue for the state.”

No real significant push has been made towards nation legislation despite states taking a piece of the action.

Source: LA Times

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