In Massachusetts, the Special Commission On Online Gaming, Fantasy Sports Gaming And Daily Fantasy Sports has met for the first time since Republican governor Charlie Baker signed economic development legislation creating the body in August.
Being led by Massachusetts House Of Representatives member Joseph Wagner and Massachusetts State Senator Eileen Donoghue, who also serve as Chairpersons for the Joint Committee On Economic Development And Emerging Technologies, the group is required to assemble every four to six weeks to study the legal and regulatory structures surrounding online gaming and daily fantasy sports as well as issues dealing with economic development, taxation and consumer protection.
“[This is] one of those subject matters that seems to capture the attention of the public and public policymakers and so we’re going to give it a pretty good look,” Wagner told the State House News Service.
The Special Commission On Online Gaming, Fantasy Sports Gaming And Daily Fantasy Sports is also comprised of Massachusetts State Senator Jennifer Flanagan and Massachusetts House Of Representatives member James Kelcourse as well as Massachusetts Assistant Attorney General Dan Krockmalnic and Steve Crosby, Chairman for the Massachusetts Gaming Commission, and has been asked to provide a final report by the end of July although its remit does not encompass a similar review being conducted by the Massachusetts Lottery Commission.
It has been only five years since previous Massachusetts governor Deval Patrick signed the Expanded Gaming Act into law authorizing a trio of resort-style casinos and the slots-only Plainridge Park Casino. The eastern state expects these venues, which include the $950 million MGM Springfield alongside the $2 billion Wynn Boston Harbor, to bring in tax revenues of $300 million to $500 million a year although its coffers could be further enriched by legalizing online gambling with New Jersey having already collected $63.77 million since doing so in November of 2013.
“There’s still some haziness around some of these issues [and] the public as a whole will benefit from, hopefully, some of the information that we’re able to deduce from the hearings,” told the State House News Service.
Lawmakers in Michigan, New York and California are additionally looking at legislation that could see them join Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware in legalizing some form of online gambling while Pennsylvania nearly became the latest member of this exclusive club earlier this year before its Senate opted not to pass a measure that had already made it through the lower Pennsylvania House Of Representatives.