Internet Poker Proposal Divides NY Gambling Industry

Sep 9, 2015

Credit WAMC composite image by Dave Lucas

Proposals to allow Internet poker in New York is dividing the gambling industry, with some companies predicting increased revenue for state government while others warn it would threaten existing gambling facilities.

A state legislative panel listened to both sides Wednesday during a hearing on a proposal to license and tax Internet poker games.

Not invited to speak were anti-gambling groups who say Internet poker would exploit compulsive gamblers.

Executives from large gambling companies like MGM told the lawmakers that licensed online gambling would allow New York to regulate an activity that's already going on. But representatives for local racinos said Internet poker should only be allowed if local gambling facilities are allowed to operate the games.

The committee's chairman, Republican Sen. Jon Bonacic, said the proposal would be carefully considered.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press.