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Online Poker Bill Sent To Pennsylvania Governor's Desk, Signature Expected

Keystone State Poised To Become Fourth State With I-Gaming

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On Thursday Pennsylvania lawmakers approved a gambling expansion package that includes the legalization and regulation of online casinos, including poker.

Lawmakers in both the House and Senate signed off on the plan, sending it to the governor’s desk for likely signature. The package is expected to generate some $260 million for state coffers.

The legislation also includes the legalization of online lotto sales, satellite brick-and-mortar casinos, daily fantasy sports regulation, among other provisions.

The massive 470-page bill was made public late Wednesday.

The Keystone State gambling market is worth more than $3 billion annually. Online casinos could generate around $300 million in additional gambling spend.

Pennsylvania will tax internet slots at a 54 percent rate, while taxing internet poker and other internet table games at 16 percent.

Pennsylvania’s move toward online gaming comes just days after neighboring New Jersey entered into a online poker liquidity sharing arrangement with Nevada and Delaware, the other two states with regulated web betting.

Pennsylvania could eventually enter the mix.

The Poker Players Alliance, which has been pushing the issue in Pennsylvania for years, applauded the votes this week that sent the bill to Gov. Tom Wolf’s desk.

“This is a major victory for consumers who, for years, have asked the state to step up and provide meaningful protections,” said PPA Executive Director John Pappas. “The iGaming law will also help create new growth opportunities for the Commonwealth’s bricks and mortar casinos while providing needed revenue for the state budget.”

This is a developing story, check back for more.