Thursday, 12 January 2017

Pennsylvania proposes online gambling bill

Pennsylvania Senator Mr. Jay Costa proposed a bill with detailed plans, that would help Pennsylvania regulate online gambling, including daily fantasy sports and online lotteries.
In Pennsylvania, currently licensed casinos have to pay a fee of $10 million for a license to offer online gambling. Vendors that offer games would have to pay a $5 million licensing fee. Online gambling would be taxed at the rate of 25 percent. Slot machines in Pennsylvania are taxed at 54 percent, while table games are taxed at 16 percent.
The daily fantasy provision in Costa’s proposed bill says, In order to be licensed in Pennsylvania, companies would have to pay a $2.5 million licensing fee. Revenues would then be taxed at 25 percent. Legal Sports Report, a site that covers online sports gambling, says that 25 percent tax and $2.5 million licensing fee would be the highest in the country.
“No state has set a DFS licensing fee anywhere near $2.5 million, let alone seven figures,” the site’s Dustin Gouker writes. “The 25% tax rate would be the highest tax rate, by far, of the states that tax DFS revenue. The only ones close are New York (15.5%) and Missouri (11.5%).” 
The two major daily fantasy companies, DraftKings and FanDuel, currently operate unlicensed in the state. Costa’s bill says the state expects to generate $5 million from the licensing fee, meaning the state only expects those two sites to pay to compete in the state.
The bill would also allow the Pennsylvania Lottery to begin operating online lottery games, allow tablet gaming at the Philadelphia and Pittsburgh airports.
Costa says his bill would generate an estimated $137 million for the state in the current fiscal year.

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