California Bill AB-2026 Amended Again To Study Online Poker

For anyone who knows of the AB 2026 Bill, you already know it was originally proposed as a means to study the online poker industry to determine whether it would be beneficial to legalize online poker in California. AB 2026 was then amended to skip the study process, moving straight into the legalization and regulation phase upon passage (and there was much rejoicing!) The California Senate, however, has gone topsy-turvy on us, re-amending the bill right back to its original state – to study the feasibility of legal online poker in California.

In June, the Senate Governmental Organization Committee approved AB 2026, deemed the California Gambling Control/Intrastate Online Poker Legalization Act, but that’s not enough to pass the bill into law. It was then scheduled to hit the desks of the Senate Appropriations Committee in August. Had the bill passes from there, state residents were hoping to see legal online poker in California by as early as July 2009.

Of course, that’s not what happened. The Senate instead revised the bill, flipping it back to its original position – a bill that would study the online poker industry to ascertain whether California should call upon its right, as is the rights of all individual states, to legalize online poker within the borders of California.

The following declaration, and partial amendment of AB 2026, if not eloquently put (don’t you love legal terms?) at least gets the meaning across quite clearly: “The enactment of this act does not authorize the play of Internet poker. In enacting this act, it is merely the intent of the Legislature to have the appropriate state agencies develop a suggested structure, potential regulatory guidelines, and estimate on the amount of revenues to the State of California that may be generated by the play of Internet poker for possible consideration in the future.”

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