The New York Senate Racing, Gaming and Wagering Committee has given unanimous support to proposed legislation that would legalise sports betting in the state.
Bill S 17 was voted through on Monday and now heads to the Senate Finance Committee for approval.
If passed into law, the bill will allow mobile betting as well as sportsbook operations at land-based casinos.
It will not extend those same rights to racetracks, racinos and off-track betting shops.
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Some lawmakers, including Senator Daphne Jordan, want to see those wagering businesses given the same opportunities as the state’s casinos.
“To say you can help them later, I’m just not sure how because what share is left for them at that point when everything is up and running,” she said.
“What I’d really like to see is a plan to include those other entities and not three years from now.”
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Committee chairman Joseph Addabbo Jr conceded further changes might yet be made before the bill reaches Governor Andrew Cuomo.
“The way I see it, this is a puzzle that the pieces are still missing,” he said.
“We need to move forward today in order to keep this momentum going, but the bottom line is this may not be the last version of the bill.
“It all depends on what direction the governor wants to take.”
Gov. Cuomo has questioned the supposed financial benefits of sports betting and was once quoted as saying “$13 million dollars is a rounding error in our state” when discussing the New Jersey betting industry.
The Garden State has collected more than $150 million in tax revenue from sports betting since it was legalised last June.
According to Addabbo Jr, around 25 per cent of that money is coming from New York residents.
Neighbouring Pennsylvania has also legalised gambling on sport, so there is no telling how much betting action is crossing state lines.
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