New York Cozies Up to Online Poker

Legal online poker might become a reality soon in New York, and state lawmakers have included it in revenue projections.

The state’s lawmakers are looking for ways to cover a projected $150 billion state budget, and online poker could become legal in a matter of months.

New York Assemblyman Gary Pretlow, who chairs the Assembly Racing and Wagering Committee, says the committee likely would move an online poker bill that involves the state’s brick-and-mortar casinos in the online poker games.

Gaming analysts estimate online poker could generate more than $120 million in the state during its first year, and could generate about five times the $2 million in monthly revenues generated in neighboring New Jersey.

A bill that would make online poker legal in New York shows promise, and state lawmakers are moving fast on enabling legislation that would legalize and regulate daily fantasy sports in time for the fall football season.

Any movement on daily fantasy sports could lead to a similar push to get online poker up and running in New York.

The Senate Racing, Gaming and Wagering Committee recently passed S 5302B, which would legalize online poker in New York. No prior online poker bill made it out of committee.

The measure awaits scrutiny before the Senate Finance Committee, but stands a good chance of seeing a full floor debate and possible passage, along with daily fantasy sports regulation.