New York’s Online Gambling Bill Faces Amendment Process

New York Continues Pursuit of Legalizing Online Gambling

New York has been at the forefront of the legal online sports betting market for over two years. The success of the market has been evident through various milestones achieved since its launch. However, lawmakers in the state are still pushing for the legalization of online gambling.

Sen. Joseph Addabbo recently introduced a new iGaming and iLottery bill, Senate Bill 8185 (S8185), aimed at authorizing online gambling activities and online lotteries across New York. The bill was initially referred to the New York Senate Racing, Gaming and Wagering Committee on January 11, 2024, and has since been amended and recommitted to the Committee. The latest edition of the bill, which includes Article 15, outlines plans for the future iGaming sector in the state and emphasizes the proposal for a robust and competitive market.

In addition to commercial operators, the bill also invites tribal operators to apply for iGaming licenses, but with the condition that they waive their exclusive geographic rights to offer and conduct interactive gaming on tribal lands. This would allow tribal operators to offer iGaming activities within their lands while also allowing consumers to access the services of other licensed operators.

The latest amendment within S8185 addresses the relations between iGaming and iLottery operators with union workers. It stipulates that online gambling operators must enter into a labor peace agreement with labor organizations representing gaming or hospitality industry workers as part of their application for an interactive gaming license, ensuring that they employ workers who are part of unions.

The proposal also outlines a 31.5% tax on online gambling operators’ gross gaming revenue, with the collected taxes benefitting the New York lottery fund for education aid. Additionally, $11 million annually would be dedicated to treating problem gambling and education in cooperation with the New York State Office of Addiction Services and Supports.

The continued effort to legalize online gambling in New York demonstrates the state’s commitment to expanding its gambling offerings and ensuring responsible gambling practices through tax allocation and support for problem gambling treatment and education.