A bill has been introduced to the New York State Senate that, if passed, would legalize igaming in the state.
Senator Joe Addabbo introduced Senate Bill 8412 which would authorize igaming in the Empire State. The bill was referred to the New York State Senate Racing, Gambling, and Wagering Committee.
The igaming bill introduction comes hot on the heels of online sports betting’s launch in New York. Its market has since gone on to surpass over $2bn in handle following its launch at the start of January.
If Bill 8412 is approved, online operators and authorized casinos would be able to offer igaming in the state. The bill sets an igaming tax rate of 25%, significantly lower than the current 51% tax rate on online sports betting.
A $2m one-time fee would have to be paid by casinos or operators that are approved for igaming, while a $10m one-time fee would have to be paid by any independent contractor providing an operator’s igaming wagering platform and displaying its brand.
The bill’s summary states that New York would receive approximately $475m annually in state tax revenue, and around $150m in one-time license fees from casinos, operators, and independent contractors looking to conduct igaming in its first year of operation.
Making igaming legal in New York is justified by two factors in the bill summary: the success of online casinos in neighboring states, and the success online sports betting has seen in its first month of operation in the Empire State.
Currently, seven US states have authorized online interactive casino gaming, including New York’s neighboring states of New Jersey, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania. Last year, online casino gaming revenue exceeded $1bn in both New Jersey and Pennsylvania, generating approximately $120m in tax revenue for each of those states.
The bill summary notes that New York’s igaming market could follow a similar path to its online sports betting market if legalized.
The Empire State’s online sportsbooks yielded nearly $70m in tax revenue in its opening month, and the bill summary states New York would ‘quickly become the national leader in online casino gaming, generating hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenue annually’.