Revisions to New York Online Poker Legislation Expected After Hearing

An informational hearing on a potential online poker bill in New York prompted state Senator John Bonacic (l.)—who has twice introduced online poker bills in the state—to say he wants to make revision to a future bill before trying again. Bonacic said he will consider lowering proposed licensing fees and whether online sites should be partnered with a brick-and-mortar casino.

New York State Senator John Bonacic said a recent hearing on online poker proposals may prompt him to revise his plan for an online poker bill in the state.

The hearing included representatives of the gaming industry and regulatory organizations.

Representatives of Caesars Entertainment, Boyd Gaming and MGM Resorts, spoke at the hearing in Albany in support of a bill as did representatives of the Poker Players Alliance. Representatives of the New York Gaming Association, however, felt online gaming should be slowed until the performance of new brick-and-mortar casinos could be gauged, according to a report in PokerNewsDaily.

Bonacic said after the meeting that he is considering revising his bill to lower proposed license fees—now at $10 million—and also whether the sites should partner with a brick-and-mortar casino.

Bonacic, however, said he will introduce a third attempt despite the New York Gaming Association’s stance.

“I appreciate their concerns, but those must be weighed against the existing lack of consumer protections for those who wish to play poker online, as well as the revenue being lost by the state every day,” he told

Still, no bill is expected in 2015, he said, and he hopes to have the issue before the state legislature in 2016.