Online poker legislation in the state of California has been unable to pass into law for many years as the invested parties cannot seem to come to an agreement as to how the online gaming option should take place. Currently, AB 2863 has shown great promise as a way for the state to finally offer iPoker gaming but there is still opposition from the Pechanga Coalitions of Indian Tribes. However, the coalition recently issued a letter that showed potential for a compromise that would see their opposition of the legislation removed.
The coalition has strongly opposed any legislation that does not include bad actor clauses. The group feels that bad actors should not be allowed to participate in California online poker gaming. The compromise mentioned in the letter would be a shift in their position but may not be a quick resolution to allowing legislation to move forward.
The letter was penned by the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians and the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians. The compromised listed in the letter would remove the tribes opposition to the legislation and allow online poker to be offered by PokerStars. A proposed amendment was provided by the coalition that would ban the brand from offering online poker gaming for ten years. The company would also have to pay a fee of $60 million to be able to provide online services.
This is a huge difference between the amendments that are currently listed with the online poker measure. As drafted right now, PokerStars would be facing a ban of five years or have the option to pay a fee of $20 million. If they pay the fee, they would be allowed to operate immediately.
For now, it seems negotiations are in order. Who will be willing to compromise more? One has to wonder what terms PokerStars will be willing to meet as well as what the Pechanga Coalition will be willing to concede to see online poker come to fruition within the state.
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