Parliament to Reconsider Sports Betting Legislation in Canada

sports betting legislation in Canada fight between Conservatives and democrats

The New Democrat Party have confirmed that they will be reintroducing the C-290 sports betting legislation in Canada’s parliament.

In major Canadian gambling news, the controversial C-290 bill—an act that would amend Canada’s Criminal Code to allow single-event wagering in sports betting—will be brought back to Parliament in the near future after having expired back in 2012. The sports betting legislation in Canada failed previously due to rejection from the Conservative Party, who have 99 of 338 seats in the House of Commons and 47 of 105 seats in the House of Lords. Due to the bicameral legislative nature of Canada’s Parliament, both houses must approve of a bill in order for it to be passed.

The bill’s primary sponsor this time around is rumoured to be NDP member Brian Masse. In recent interviews, Masse emphasized that the NDP wants to push a compromise approach regarding the C-290 bill. They plan to attempt to negotiate sports betting legislation in Canada with all major Canadian political parties.

Canada’s only current legal form of sports betting is parlay betting, which is offered through lotto operations. As a result of its banning of single-event wagering, Canada has a thriving underground sports betting industry worth billions of dollars that the country cannot generate important tax revenue from.

NBA does not oppose sports betting legislation in Canada

NBA Chairman Adam Silver approves of sports betting legislation in Canada

Adam Silver would give his blessing to the new sports betting legislation in Canada

With news of the reintroduction of the C-290 bill, all eyes are on major North American sports organization and how they feel about the possibility of legalized online sportsbooks in Canada. The MLB, CFL, and NHL were all against the old C-290 bill, and because many of them are currently fighting similar legislation in the US state of New Jersey, it is likely that their stance will remain the same for the new sports betting legislation in Canada.

The only major league to change its position on the legalization of single-game sports betting is the NBA, who switched their views when the old C-290 bill was nearing its expiry date. Back then, NBA commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement that: “Consistent with the NBA’s current position regarding legalized sports betting in the United States, the NBA is no longer opposed to legalized sports betting in Canada so long as there is an appropriate legislative framework that protects the integrity of the game under strict regulatory requirements and technological safeguards. These would include, at a minimum, mandatory monitoring and reporting of unusual betting-line movements; a licensing protocol for betting operators; minimum-age verification measures; geo-blocking technology to ensure betting is available only where it is legal; mechanisms to identify and exclude people with gambling problems; and education about responsible gaming.”

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