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Proposed Bill Represents Significant Threat to U.S. Online Gambling
September 14, 2012 Brent Hannify No comments
There’s a new bill by Senators Harry Reid and Jon Kyl that would prohibit all forms of unlicensed gambling in the United States except for lottery tickets and horse racing, and but for a few special cases, online poker as well.
In its present form, a summary of the proposed Internet Gambling Prohibition, Poker Consumer Protection and Strengthening UIGEA Act of 2012 has been sent to Congress.
If approved, the legislation would establish the Office of Online Poker Oversight which has a really clever acronym—OOPO—as part of the Department of Commerce. According to iGamingBusiness, the office would:
“…supervise the control of online poker while additional regulators could be appointed to help with the issuance of licenses. It would also require that states wishing to offer online poker and off-track betting opt-in via an election involving a majority vote in both local legislative chambers. Doing nothing would see a state opt-out while aboriginal groups could apply only if the state in which they operate has selected to take part.
The act would continue to authorize online lottery ticket sales, but would prohibit states from offering games that emulate casino or slot machines and—here’s the scary part—also ban international online poker pools.
There would also be a five-year ban on any operator or service that offered online gambling to Americans after 2006 in violation of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act.
And lastly, for anyone lucky enough to get an online poker license, they’d have to pay a 16 percent tax, split into two percent for the federal government and 14 percent for the state or tribe in which the license is issued. Also, if you do get a license, you have to wait 15 months before you can actually start dealing the cards.
That is all. Raise your hand if you want this bill defeated.