Senator John Bonacic Introduces Sports Betting Bill in New York  

Chairman of the Senate Racing, Gaming and Wagering Committee, Senator John Bonacic, introduced a new sports betting bill this week in New York. The goal is to see single-game wagering legalized within gaming venues of the state. Lawmakers already authorized sports wagering to be offered at commercial casinos, once a change is made to federal law. This could happen if the United States Supreme Court decides to rule the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act unconstitutional in a case involving the state of New Jersey, later on this year.

In a statement discussing the new bill, Bonacic commented that New York has historically been behind when it comes to gaming developments. If allowed, Bonacic feels that sports betting would be a good revenue enhancer for education needs of the state.

Bonacic introduced S 7900 this week, a bill that would authorize sports wagering options at casinos in New York as well as tracks and off-track betting parlors. According to Legal Sports Report, the new bill has a tax rate of 10.5% on gross gaming revenue. This includes an integrity fee that will be paid to leagues based on certain conditions. The state will receive 8.5% of gross gaming revenue.

The integrity fee would be .25% of the handle from sports betting, with no more than 2% of gross gaming revenues paid to leagues. In the past, leagues had asked for a 1% of the handle for integrity fees.

Now that the bill has been introduced, we must wait and see how it progresses. It would not be surprising to see a committee hearing scheduled within the State Senate for the bill in the near future. Also, a ruling by the Supreme Court must be made in the New Jersey sports betting case  if states like New York are going to be able to move forward with any type of sports betting offering. The ruling will need to be in New Jersey’s favor for sports betting to become an option across the nation, rather than restricted to particular states as it is today.

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