Pennsylvania State Representative John Payne has confirmed that the bill that would legalize online gambling in the US state will not pass in 2015.
In February, Representative John Payne has introduced a bill (HB 649) that would legalize online gambling in Pennsylvania. Later in November, the augmented bill has gained the support of 18 members of the House Gaming Oversight Committee. However, the online gambling bill got blocked because of disagreements with the Senate.
Despite all the progress and expectations, Payne announced that the bill will not pass this year. First, they pushed the vote from December 8th to 9th but in the end it got delayed until the spring of 2016. US gambling news report that House Republicans rejected the $30.8 billion spending package that that Senate GOP approved.
The Pennsylvania Online Gambling bill could provide USD 300 million to the state
“The safety of consumers and the fiscal health of Pennsylvania will be vastly improved when internet gaming is appropriately licensed, regulated, and taxed,” said the Executive Director of the Poker Player’s Alliance, John Pappas, in November. His statement reflected the US online poker community’s hopes “that the legislation will be enacted on its own or as part of the state’s 2016 budget by the end of this year.”
With legalized online gambling in Pennsylvania, the HB 649 package is estimated to provide $300 million in annual revenues. Its passage would aid the $2 billion budget deficit of the state. However, the funding mechanism of the bill needs the approval of the legislature and the signature of the governor to become a law. Pennsylvania’s online gambling bill is similar to those of Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware.