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New York Online Poker Efforts Shelved Until 2019

Legislation Again Stalls In Assembly


With the New York 2018 legislative session ending late last month, online poker proponents will—again—have to wait until next year for a law change.

Despite legislation advancing in the Senate in yet another session, the proposal stalled over in the Assembly. There wasn’t even a vote held on the bill in the Assembly.

However, 2018 offered some much-needed optimism for New York’s online poker efforts.

In late May, MGM Resorts announced that it had reached a deal to acquire Empire City Casino, a slots and racetrack gambling facility located in Yonkers, about 15 miles from Times Square. MGM is a longtime supporter of online poker and has pushed for it in the Empire State. Additionally, in mid-May, the U.S. Supreme Court gave states the green light to accept sports bets, both online and in-person. The ruling bolsters states’ rights when it comes to authorizing various forms of online betting. New York also failed to pass a sports betting bill in 2018.

Assemblyman Gary Pretlow is the lawmaker spearheading online poker efforts in his legislative chamber. Historically, Pretlow has given a fairly wide range of comments pertaining to online poker, but this past spring he said that “we are going to get [online poker] done.”

That didn’t happen this year. According to OnlinePokerReport, Pretlow believed he was just eight votes away from passing the legislation through the Assembly.