Massachusetts Continues Online Gambling Study

Massachusetts Continues Online Gambling StudyThe state of Massachusetts will continue to consider online gambling legislation despite recently losing the support of the American Gaming Association (AGA).

The AGA announced last week that it would [geolink href=””]no longer be lobbying for Internet gambling regulations[/geolink] due to divisiveness among the organization’s membership. Although that lack of support may slow down legislative efforts in a number of states, Massachusetts won’t be one of them as Bay State officials plan to forge ahead with studying the benefits of igaming.

State treasurer Steven Grossman, who is also eyeing a bid to become governor, told the Boston Herald that Massachusetts will continue to move forward on researching how online gambling can potentially affect us. He added that changes are sometimes necessary to facilitate a better government and that Internet wagering regulations may be one of those changes.

A bill is on the table in the state legislature that would allow the state Lottery to operate online gambling. Before taking the plunge, the main concerns are to make sure that such legislation will not put a damper on Lottery sales and will also not lead to a spike in residents becoming addicted to gambling.

The Massachusetts igaming proposal appears to be unique with regard to legislation passed in other states in that Lottery officials are suggesting that credit cards not be permitted in making deposits to online gambling sites. New Jersey’s Internet gambling scheme has suffered [geolink href=””]due to banks and financial institutions[/geolink] being hesitant to accept the Mastercard and Visa deposits of gamblers despite the legality of doing so.

The AGA had been shilling for online gambling with CEO Geoff Freeman joining Poker Players Alliance chairman John Pappas in testifying before Congress as to the need for legislation in order to protect consumers and generate revenue. But the opposition of Las Vegas Sands CEO Sheldon Adelson, a longtime AGA member, has forced the AGA to back off.

Adelson’s Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling has been a thorn in the side of pro-online gambling activists since the billionaire established the organization six months ago. While other states may be swayed by the lack of support emanating from the AGA, it is encouraging to see that Massachusetts refuses to get dragged into that debate.

Other states may also be losing favor as to considering online gambling after New Jersey failed to meet revenue expectations by a large margin. However, the regime is still in its infancy and future [geolink href=””]interstate online poker partnerships[/geolink] may be key in turning around the disappointing revenue and participation numbers among players.

Massachusetts plans a slow and deliberate approach to the matter, according to gaming commission chairman Stephen Crosby. While opinions vary greatly with regard to the benefits of Internet gambling regulations, Bay State officials will arrive at their own conclusions as to what is best for the people of the commonwealth. For more detailed information, please read my [geolink href=””]Massachusetts Poker[/geolink] page.

Jacqueline Packett
Jacqueline Packett