Online Gambling Doesn't Make It Into New York Budget - Again

Published April 23, 2018 by Elana K

Online Gambling Doesn't Make It Into New York Budget - Again

For the third year in a row, online gambling was approved by some New York lawmakers but ultimately didn't make it into the budget. At the same time, New York casinos are struggling with no improvement on the horizon.

Those who hoped to see the state of New York move forward with online gambling in 2018 were disappointed earlier this month when the new budget conclusively left out online gambling. Hopes were especially high since the Senate voted in favor of online gambling in the beginning of 2018, but despite multiple efforts, online gambling still did not make the cut.

Land-Based Casinos in New York Struggle

All four of the new non-tribal, land-based casinos in New York have fallen short of projected revenue totals, and two of them even requested financial help from the state to bail them out of the red. Governor Andrew Cuomo refused and commented,

The upstate gaming casinos are private concerns. They bid, they made an investment and some of them will say they’re not doing as well as they hoped or would have expected, but they’re private concerns, and I don’t want to get into the business of bailing out private concerns.

Could Legalizing Online Gambling Help Land-Based Casinos?

Since online gambling was legalized in New Jersey in 2013, Atlantic City casinos have done increasingly well, and the correlation between the success of online casinos and land-based casinos has certainly been noted. As such, online gambling proponents in New York believe that legalizing online gambling in the state could help the state’s existing land-based casinos out of their financial woes.

However, that won't be happening this year.

Is Sports Betting the Key?

The Supreme Court is currently in the process of ruling whether sports gambling is legal in the U.S. and some speculators say that New York lawmakers would prefer to first focus on sports betting and then on online gambling. This means that until SCOTUS renders a ruling on sports betting, there might not be any chance for online gambling in New York. 

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