New York State Senator, Joseph Addabbo, has reintroduced a bill that proposes the legalization of iGaming, reports Gambling News.

Online gambling is legal in several US states, including Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Michigan and West Virginia, while Rhode Island is also expected to join the list in April.

Addabbo’s proposal includes the legalization of online lotteries, such as Mega Millions and Powerball, while it also includes online table games and slots. The State Sen. has been a long-term supporter of online gambling in the state, citing the revenue it brings as vital to financing key services, such as education. He previously supported the legalization of sports betting in New York, which allows for both online and retail wagering.

In an opinion piece in December last year, he confirmed the new proposal to authorize iGaming and iLottery in New York would use the same framework already in place for mobile sports betting.

The introduction of iGaming to the bill will heavily increase tax revenue for the Empire State, which already stands at around $1 billion annually. This new proposal outlines a 30.5% tax on operators that wish to offer online gambling services, while there would also be a $2 million one-time fee to gain a license.

If Governor Kathy Hochul approves the proposal and signs it into law, it’s estimated that New York would benefit from an additional $1 billion boost in revenue each year.

‘New York needs the tax revenue’

The revenue gained from a regulated iGaming market would heavily benefit the state’s  Lottery Fund, which provides important finances to education across New York.

In his opinion piece, Addabbo admits that the state faces a “looming budget deficit,” and pointed to hundreds of millions of dollars spent on iGaming in the state leaving to fill the pockets of illegal gambling operators. He argues that by keeping that money in New York, public schools and educational programs would be the key beneficiaries.

The budget deficit he speaks of is believed to be in the region of $4.3 billion for 2024, rising to $8 billion by 2025, so the estimated $1 billion raised by a regulated iGaming market would go someway in reducing that if a bill is passed into law.

Featured Image: Photo by Benjamín Gremler on Unsplash

James Jones

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