Pennsylvania's Pursuit of Online Gambling: More on HB 2150

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In what seems to be a recurring headline, another U.S. state appears to be entered the world of online casino and daily fantasy sports gambling.

The first step towards online gambling in the state of Pennsylvania was approved by their House of Representative last month by a wide margin of 114-85.

The bill, HB 2150, was previously rejected due to the inclusion of a provision which called for video gaming terminals to be installed throughout the state. The removal of the clause was all it took for the bill to make its way through the House of Representatives.

The bill also contains a 'Hail Mary' provision so to speak which basically says that if the federal government repeals its nationwide ban on sports betting, state-licensed casinos would be able to seek and receive licensing to accept sports wagers. New Jersey is currently in the midst of a court battle against the major sports leagues attempting to bring sports betting to the Garden State.

The next hurdle the bill must pass is to move through the Pennsylvania Senate and if successful, land-based casino operators will be able to augment their current gaming business with an online presence. Only residents within the state of Pennsylvania would have access to the cyber gaming platform but in addition to online gaming, the bill also includes provisions for slots and mobile gaming solely at the state’s airports.

Cost of Doing Business in Pennsylvania
Casino operators seeking an online license would be charged $8 million initially for a license that would span five years with yearly renewal fees of $250,000. State approved tech companies would be required to pay $2 million for their license with fees of $100,000 annually. The bill additionally calls for the state to rake a commission of 16% of all online gambling revenue generated, in addition to the upfront fees and renewals. Credit to PennLive for the figures used.

California, Illinois, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New York and Washington are all looking to do the same in one form or another. Those states, if successful, would join Delaware, New Jersey and Nevada as legal online intrastate gambling venues. States will ally solely with legitimate gaming corporations which should assuage the concerns of many online gamblers about the safety of their money as well as the ability to facilitate monetary transactions.

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