Senator Joe Addabbo will be reintroducing a bill to legalize online casino gaming in New York during the state’s 2023 legislative session. During a Sunday panel discussion at the National Council of Legislators from the Gaming States (NCLGS) conference in Las Vegas, the estimated $2.1 billion gross gaming revenue with a 20% tax rate could potentially lead to $428 million in tax revenues for New York. It is unclear if the bill will move forward, but advocates insist that this will be an attractive option for residents looking for new options for gambling.
Obstacles To NY Online Casinos Legalization
As evidenced in the panel discussion, there are several significant hurdles standing in the way of legalizing online casinos in New York. There is pressure from unions, competing interests stemming from different industries, and a long and complex process for any major gaming expansion. Furthermore, with the three downstate casinos which are set to be expanded upon in New York, it would prove even more difficult to push through with an online casino bill.
One challenge is that many online casino operators have already agreed on a 51% tax rate when they entered into the sports betting market – now they are asking for a reduction which could prove very challenging considering the record-breaking revenue the Empire State has generated so far. As such, proponents of iGaming are encouraging those same operators to leave their reduction pursuits behind and focus instead on pushing for iGaming in 2023.
Addressing Addiction Issues
Senator Joe Addabbo has already begun to take proactive steps toward creating a more robust and extensive online casino bill in New York. Last week, he revealed to Legal Sports Report that greater attention needs to be paid to responsible gaming when structuring the legislation, such as potentially limiting online gaming availability 24-7.
To that end, Addabbo and his Assembly counterpart Gary Pretlow are actively working together in preparation for the 2023 state budget session which is set to begin in January of that year. Addabbo is focused on ensuring that any system which will be implemented is carefully thought out and discussed with all necessary stakeholders before being launched.
Newest Developments On Downstate NY Casinos
With the New York Gaming Facility Location Board’s request for applications set to be issued on Jan. 6 for downstate casinos, two of the partnerships that have generated a lot of interest are Steve Cohen-Citi Field-Hard Rock and Times Square-SL Green-Caesars-Jay-Z (Roc Nation).
Many believe that Resorts World NYC and MGM Empire City, which both have existing video lottery terminals in place, will be the frontrunners to secure two of the three licenses. Unfortunately, no timeline has currently been set for when those licenses will be awarded; however, industry insiders are hypothesizing that even if local siting boards take six months to go through all the applications the earliest they could grant a license would probably be Q1 2024.