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Senate Bill 17 passed through the state’s Racing, Gaming and Wagering Committee with a unanimous vote for advancement to the Senate Finance Committee.
S 17, the bill’s official name, would legalize mobile betting inside the state at commercial and tribal casinos.
The inclusion of commercial casinos comes as a surprise after early reports stated that only tribal casinos would see mobile betting.
In another peculiar move, the horse racing industry, namely racetracks, racinos and off-track betting parlors, were all left out of the bill.
Senator Daphne Jordan passed the measure but not without concerns for an even playing field for all wagering operators.
“To say you can help them later, I’m just not sure how because what share is left for them at that point when everything is up and running,” said Jordan.
“What I’d really like to see is a plan to include those other entities and not three years from now.”
The bill continues to the senate’s Finance Committee for a further breakdown of the financial impact sports betting could have on the state’s economy.
Before the bill moved out of committee, representatives from the New York Giants and Jets and the Buffalo Bills of the NFL all urged senators to keep the integrity of the games in mind.
The teams believe that “sports betting threatens the integrity of our nation’s professional and amateur sporting contests.”
“There is no greater priority for the NFL than protecting the integrity of our sport and the welfare of our players.”
The leagues want consumer protections, fan access to official statistics and monitoring by law enforcement to assure games are legitimate.
All of the major three sports leagues in the United States have called for a small percentage of all bets placed on their games to go to back to the leagues, but all states have rejected the proposal.
Losing out on millions in revenue is causing concern for New York lawmakers and speeding up the call for a quick timeline to legalization.
Reports claim that New Jersey has taken in over one billion in bets since becoming legal soon after the Supreme Court’s decision to open the doors to sports gambling in all 50 states.
“We can stand by and watch Jersey make money, but some of that is our money,” said New York state Senator Joe Addabo.
Legislators continue to hear from New York residents who want to bet legally inside the state but have to travel to Jersey as long as the state stays out of the betting game.
“Jersey is doing fantastically right now,” said Assemblyman Gary Pretlow.
“I know people that work out of Wall Street are jumping on a PATH train and placing their bets, across the platform to Hoboken and going back to Wall Street.”
Estimates put legal sports betting in New York as a $10-30 million dollar windfall for the state each year.
“It’s not a question of if we’re going to do sports betting, it’s when,” said state Sen. Addabbo.
“Everybody is looking for a piece of sports betting. We want the revenue.”
Due to the slow playing legislators in New York, the revenue for the state does not seem to be coming anytime soon.
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