In 1990, popular actor Christopher Walken portrayed a drug kingpin recently out of prison in the movie “King of New York”. Brutally wiping out his competition, he handed out much of the profits of his illegal operations in the film to the poor and lower classes of New York. With thoughts of running for Mayor, his altruistic but albeit questionable actions earned him the nickname which is also the title of the movie. Similar to the drug war that Walken successfully emerged from in the film, there is currently a battle taking place in the cyber world in the United States. Online gambling has legally returned at the state level in the USA, but most US Internet poker players currently enjoy legal offshore options. State legislators from The Big Apple are aggressively fighting for their state to become the fourth in the USA to get on board as they to strive to offer legal New York online gambling, hoping to gain control of much needed revenue which is moving out of state.
The move would almost certainly result in New York becoming the financial leader in America’s Internet gambling marketplace immediately. New York claims roughly 20 million residents, while the combined populations of Delaware, New Jersey and Nevada, the three current states legally delivering Web gambling options, total less than 13 million. Along with California, New York is in a race to deliver Internet poker as a Web gambling option for its residents and travelers. If the Empire State can effectively beat the more populous California in becoming the next participant in the United States gambling online industry, New York online poker would definitely deserve consideration as the new King of New York. And it probably would not require Walken and Laurence Fishburne, his right-hand man in the movie, to fire a single shot.
All that is needed is passage of a legislative internet gaming package and a signature by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, and The City That Never Sleeps can spend its sleepless nights legally gambling on the Internet. And while some online gambling opponents point to less than stellar financial numbers generated by that industry thus far, CardsChat.com CEO Nicholas Kisberg pointed out that the marketplace is barely a year old in Nevada, and just six months old in Delaware and New Jersey. “This market is still maturing” and it takes time for US players with the newly available Internet gambling options to become comfortable with the state-based operations.
He went on to point out that Web gambling usually enjoys steady growth in regulated markets, something he sees happening over the next couple of years in the United States. Massachusetts is another nearby state, along with Illinois and Pennsylvania, which is on the verge of moving ahead with legislation which would legalize online poker. And even though New York does not enjoy the land-based casino presence which is often viewed as a successful platform for regulated online gaming, there is other support. New York has a rich history of supporting physical card rooms, and millions of the state’s residents consistently drive across state lines to enjoy brick-and-mortar casino and poker action at nearby states where it is legally offered.
New York card players have hope, as Bill S6913 was recently introduced to the New York Senate. It calls for legally regulating online Texas Hold’ Em and Omaha for residents of the state, as well as vacationers and travelers located within state lines. Put forth by Senator John Bonacic, this is actually an amendment to a current gambling law that views poker as a game of skill, and not one of luck. Currently in the hands of the New York Senate Committee on Racing, Gaming and Wagering, many pro-gambling industry analysts in America believe the chances for passage are favorable. Maybe that’s because Bonacic is coincidentally the chairman of that committee. The legislative package would require a $10 million Internet gaming license fee and a tax rate of 15% paid by any license holders.