Michigan Lawmakers Still Have Time To Talk Online Poker In 2016
Weeks after all hope for any movement on the online poker front seemed lost, word comes from a Michigan senator that state lawmakers still have plenty of time. Sen. Mike Kowall told Card Player how there will be time to talk online poker and casino games before the end of 2016.
Months of inaction on the subject left online poker fans with little hope that the state of Michigan would make any progress this year. However, based on the word from Kowall, it is entirely possible that the state senate members are ready to move forward.
With plans to meet this week as well as upcoming session days in November and into December, lawmakers have an opportunity to become the first state to legalize online poker since 2013. The long-anticipated legislation has been in the works for nearly three years.
In 2014 the state opted to hold off on online poker and casino games, legalizing the online lottery first. The current bill for online poker was finally approved by the Senate Regulatory Reform Committee in June. It has since been awaiting a full vote in the Senate.
The bill is written in an effort to benefit both the state tribes and commercial casino interests. The latest revenue report from the three Detroit casinos and the 23 tribal casinos in the state shows a $1.4 billion and $1.5 billion annual gambling win, respectively. Adding online poker would provide a boost to the state's gaming industry as well as state revenues.