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Pennsylvania Might Soon Be Betting On On-Line Poker Revenue

Written By: Maya Michaels | August 12, 2015 | Posted In Poker News

Because casinos’ monthly revenue across the country have not met anticipated goals, States are having to get creative in meeting shortages in projected gambling revenues. Some States like New Jersey and Nevada, and Delaware have passed bills that tax internet poker proceeds. Other States, like California, have examined the issue but, at present, have failed to even hold a discussion that the on-line gaming rooms, tribal communities and betting industries find remotely beneficial.

While it might not succeed in passing legislation, Pennsylvania is looking at regulating on-line gaming. Unlike the discord that has impaired the progress of introducing any legislation in California, Pennsylvania appears to be approaching this issue with a reasoned and realistic goal. Taking heed of other States with on-line regulation already in place, Pennsylvania lawmakers are backing regulations that tax anywhere from 14 to 54 percent.

State Representative John Payne (R-Dauphin County), the majority chairman of the House Gaming Oversight Committee, recently introduced his own bill to regulate online poker, but understands that several bill most likely will be introduced to the legislature this year. Whether or not his bill is considered, Payne said that the greatest concern is to support the bill that has the greatest chance to bring the State a consistent revenue stream. Even with the promise of revenue, the Pennsylvania legislature has learned to be cautious of over-projecting the anticipated revenue and dealing with a shortfall that occurred in New Jersey.

Payne said that some of the proposals of a tax rate of 54 percent are probably too aggressive and that his proposal of only 14 percent might not be high enough. However, he is willing to negotiate the percentage in his proposal in order to bring his bill to vote. One other bill, introduced by Kim Ward (R-Westmoreland County), the chairwoman of the Community, Economic and Recreational Development Committee, projects a 54 percent tax-rate and is likely to be the strongest competition of Payne’s proposed legislation.

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