Archive for the 'Casino' Category
The Norwegian government currently has a monopoly on the country’s gambling industry. Several lawmakers have proposed allowing the free market to take control of the industry last October. They feel that foreign gaming operators would improve the state of the gaming industry. The Norwegian Cultural Minister, Thorhild Widvey proposed the first steps on Thursday. Widvey suggested offering a live poker tournament sometime next year.
Widvey has proposed several strict rules that clubs and casinos would need to follow if they ran the tournament. They would need to set a maximum buy-in to prevent high rollers from overspending. They would also need to limit the size of the prize pool. The Cultural Minister hasn’t stated what those limits will need to be.
Widvey discussed the proposal with Roy Steffensen, one of the Members of Parliament. She stated that she wants to create the regulatory framework for the new tournament in the next year.
The government wants to screen gaming providers carefully to ensure they would comply with the proposed tournament rules. Casinos and clubs would need to apply for a license before they could participate in the upcoming tournament.
Steffensen and other lawmakers are worried that the proposed tournament may be illegal. However, Widvey’s interpretation of the Gaming Act state that the government regulator can conduct and oversee tournaments. If her interpretation of the law is correct, Parliament may not need to pass a new law for Widvey to move forward.
Gambling opponents could still challenge her proposal. Widvey may need to defend it before the courts, but she is confident that won’t be a problem. The government is becoming more open to liberalizing the gaming industry and few critics seem like they want to go through the hassle.
Sheldon Adelson is urging Congress to change the Wire Act and ban online gambling. Many online gaming advocates are trying to counter his arguments. A recent post from The Hill states that former Rep. Mary Bono is the most recent online gaming advocate to speak out against Adelson.
Bono used to be the Chairwoman of the House Commerce Subcommittee on Trade as well as a member of the Subcommittee on Technology. She recently told her former colleagues to fight back against any efforts to ban online gambling. She also wrote a piece in Roll Call stating “”Whether you gamble or not — and whether you participate in Internet games or not — it is clear that the prohibition of Internet gaming is a bad idea for Americans.”
The online gaming community has been fighting for legislation to support online gambling for years. They were ecstatic when the Department of Justice ruled that online gambling didn’t violate the Wire Act in 2011. However, Adelson and other lobbyists that oppose online gambling have been actively trying to make all forms of online gambling illegal again. They stated that online gambling creates a number of serious social risks for the entire country.
Bono wrote that banning online gambling never discouraged Americans from gambling over the Internet. She said that the government needs to focus on making online gambling safer for everyone rather than causing people to gamble on unregulated websites overseas.
Bono said that over a million Americans are taking a huge risk by gambling on foreign websites. She also pointed out that the state is missing out on a massive stream of potential revenue that it could generate by taxing online gambling.
Netherlands lawmakers are growing increasingly concerned about the number of companies that are targeting their players. The Dutch Gaming Authority confirmed that it will be targeting unregulated gaming providers that target citizens in their country.
The DGA has fined two gaming providers in the last few months. Both Global Stars and Mansion Poker have been forced to pay €150,000 for illegally offering online gaming to Dutch citizens.
The new statement included a number of the violations that the regulator intends to target. The DGA stated that companies that abided by the new guidelines could still be fined. However, gaming providers that exercise due diligence will be less likely to be sanctioned. The DGA confirmed that it is targeting companies that intentionally violate the country’s gaming laws.
The regulator said that it will exercise some leniency for first time offenders. They will notify gaming providers of any infractions and give them an opportunity to comply. They will impose fines and take other administrative action against companies that fail to do so. The regulator has the authority to impose fines up to €780,000 or 10% of the revenue generated from Dutch citizens.
The regulator is confident that it can force companies to comply on their own. However, it may need to refer habitual offenders to the Public Prosecution Service if they do not seem willing to make the necessary changes.
Gray market gaming providers are going to have a more difficult time operating in the Netherlands. They may have a hard time reaching customers even if they choose to continue operating in the country. the DGA stated that it has formed agreements with social media sites and other publishers to block advertising for unlicensed gaming sites, which will give a competitive advantage to companies that abide by Dutch gaming laws.
Online poker fraud has been more prevalent in the United Kingdom than many other countries. Members of Parliament feel that the existing laws are far too lax. People caught cheating only face up to two years in prison, which lawmakers feel doesn’t deter people from cheating. Lord Moynihan introduced a new bill to address the growing problem.
He is the former chairman of the British Olympic Association and sports minister. He is clearly one of the leading experts in gaming and arguably the most qualified lawmaker to pass such a bill.
Moynihan’s new bill calls for revisions to section on cheating in the Gambling Act of 2005. Players caught cheating face up to a 10-year prison sentence. The bill primarily focuses on sports betting, but the new rules could also apply to other forms of gambling. Police and courts would have considerably more power to enforce these new laws.
Moynihan spoke with Rick Parry, the chief executive of the Premier League. Parry shared a 2010 study on gambling problems facing the country, which included a number of great suggestions that Moynihan chose to embrace.
Moynihan is confident that these new laws would help significantly reduce fraud and corruption in online poker. His bill was inspired by a new law in Australia, which appears to have helped reduce fraud significantly.
The proposed revisions have been published on the Parliament website. Lord Moynihan’s colleagues are still discussing the new bill, but many of them feel that it is a step in the right direction. The new law could be enacted by the end of the year if it is passed by Parliament and signed by George Osbourne.
A number of Italian lawmakers have raised serious concerns about gambling. They have proposed a number of new rules that could set the gambling industry back. One prominent lawmaker has proposed a new bill that would ban all gambling ads. The new ban would affect all ads on both the radio and television.
Riccardo Nencini believes his new bill will reduce some of the social problems that gambling has caused. The Senate has already passed it and sent it to the Chamber of Deputies.
Many lawmakers support Nencini’s proposal. They feel that gambling can be very addictive and needs to heavily regulated to protect the country’s citizens.
The bill has been heavily criticized by the gambling industry and free market advocates. The Italian government has come under fire by the rest of the European Union for some of its controversial stances on online poker. They tried to ban foreign gaming sites from offering their services in Italy. They tried to argue that they wanted to limit access to online poker to protect their citizens, but most critics are skeptical of that claim. They said that the country wants to protect its €2 billion gaming monopoly.
European courts have since ruled that their proposals violated free trade treaties with other countries in the European Union. The new court ruling and complaints from various lobbyists has forced Italy to take a more liberal stance on online poker. They have retracted some of the controversial laws that they have proposed. However, the new proposal has still raised some concerns for the industry. They hope that it will not be passed in the other house or signed by President Napolitano.
New York lawmakers introduced a new constitutional amendment to expand casinos beyond Native American land. Voters upheld the amendment in November, which paves the way for the gaming industry to begin constructing new casinos in the northern part of the state.
Governor Andrew Cuomo recently revealed his new budget proposal. The proposal called for an expansion of the state’s casino industry. Several new casinos could be constructed by next January if the budget is passed by the state legislature.
The new law allows the state to issue four gaming licenses to casinos in the area. A new agency will be responsible for processing casino applications and issuing licenses. Cuomo intends to create the new organization within the next few weeks. The governor said that prospective licensees should be able to start filing applications by March.
Cuomo will discuss developments in the coming fall. Approved licensees will be able to start construction shortly after the announcement.
Many gaming companies are eager to build new casinos in upstate New York. Two companies have already proposed plans to build casinos in Ulster and Sullivan counties. The government has also approved construction in Albany-Saratoga and the Southern Tier.
The expanding casino industry could bring a number of positive changes for the state. Cuomo said that the economy in the northern part of the state has been struggling since the financial crisis.
He also pointed out that restricting gambling to Native American to a few casinos hasn’t deterred citizens from gambling. Many citizens are traveling to New Jersey and other states to gamble. Expanding the state’s gambling industry will allow them to reclaim money that is being lost to competing casinos in Atlantic City.
The British Gaming Commission has asked the country’s Internet Service Providers to help deter citizens from being exploited by unscrupulous online gaming providers. However, the ISPs have refused to cooperate until the courts or Parliament compel them to do so.
The gaming regulator wanted ISPs to warn consumers when they were about to access a gaming site that wasn’t licensed to operate in the United Kingdom. Some critics state that the government is trying to have ISPs play a greater role in censorship in the future.
They already agreed to require people watching adult material to register with the government. Prime Minister David Cameron has also asked ISPs to start censoring “extremist content.” Some experts warned that the definition of extremist content was very subjective, but the ISPs may still be forced to comply.
David Meyer of Gigaom said that it is encouraging that the ISPs have finally taken a stand against the government. Experts aren’t sure whether the gaming regulator will take them to court.
Meyer, a spokesperson for the Financial Times and a number of other journalists have said that the government is overstepping its boundaries when it makes these requests. They feel that ISPs and other organizations need to assert their rights. They feel that companies need to at least assert their rights when regulators try to force their hand.
These experts feel that ISPs should not be forced to assume the role of the courts in these instances. However, they may be postponing the inevitable by refusing to comply, because Parliament could pass a new law obligating them to help prevent citizens from accessing unlicensed gaming sites in the near future.
Horseshoe Casino hosted a special blackjack game for the winners of a Facebook contest it had conducted on the opening day of its Blackhawks Blackjack Pit.
The blackjack game comprised 15 rounds, during which the Facebook contest winners matched their wits against guest dealers Denis Savard and Bobby Hull, both members of the NHL Hall of Fame; Jim Cornielson, singer of the Blackhawks’ national anthem; and Gene Honda, the public address announcer for the team.
Whenever a guest dealer won, Horseshoe Casino set aside $25 for the Chicago Blackhawks Charity. As much as $4,400 was raised during the game.
Jennifer Galle, vice president (marketing) for Horseshoe Casino, expressed her delight that the Blackhawks and Horseshoe Casino decided to expand their years-old partnership and said that the Blackhawks have plenty of fans in Chicago.
The Blackhawks Blackjack Pit will be made available for the rest of the season. According to the terms of the partnership deal, the first 20,000 fans arriving at United Center to view home games will receive promotional cards, which can be used to play free games at Horseshoe Casino. A special sweepstakes will also be held for Total Rewards Card holders, giving them a chance to win free seats to Blackhawks games.
Mississippi State Rep. Bobby Moak introduced an online gaming bill in 2013. This is the third time that state lawmakers have tried to legalize online gambling. Many lawmakers and gambling professionals are optimistic that his bill will be passed, but some experts remain doubtful. Allen Godfrey, the Executive Director of the Mississippi Gaming Commission is one of the skeptics.
Godfrey acknowledged that several other states are in the process of legalizing online gambling, but doesn’t expect Mississippi to follow their example. There are a number of reasons Godfrey may be pessimistic that the state will copy the legislative efforts of Nevada, New Jersey, Delaware and other states that intend to pass online gambling bills.
Mississippi voters tend to hold conservative views on most issues. Support for legalizing online gambling is considerably lower in Mississippi than most other states. Most of the state’s politicians tend to hold the same view. Godfrey himself also stated that he won’t support any efforts to expand gambling unless he believes they will benefit the state. He appears to be skeptical that legalizing online gambling would be in the best interest of the state’s citizens and casino industry.
Godfrey clearly appears to have a legitimate reason to be skeptical that online gambling will be regulated in Mississippi. Most experts agree that the probability is considerably lower than many other states. However, that pessimism hasn’t deterred Rep. Moak or other online gaming supporters from pursuing legalization. State Rep. Richard Bennett supports Moak’s efforts to regulate online gambling. Bennett believes that online gambling will be discussed in the House this year. However, he doubts that the discussions will make any headway and doesn’t seem to believe that online gambling will be legalized in 2014.
The online poker industry in France has been dwindling for the past several years. A new report from the French gaming regulator ARJEL showed that revenues declined by 13% in 2013, which raises concerns that the industry is in more trouble than initially expected. Many experts warn that the industry will continue to suffer if it doesn’t begin sharing player pools with other European countries in the near future.
Jean-François Vilotte, the former head of ARJEL, feels that the laws will need to be changed significantly. Vilotte recently resigned from his position, partly because he was frustrated with the current regulatory landscape of the online gaming industry.
Vilotte said that the French Parliament should reform the law to allow citizens to compete against players in other countries. He also feels that lawmakers should allow gaming providers to offer more games to their patrons. They are currently only allowed to provide online poker, online sports betting and online horse races. Vilotte and other experts feel that more options would help stimulate the Internet gaming industry.
Parliament ruled against expanding online gaming to other European countries last month. Razzy Hammadi, the head of the Committee on Economic Affairs said that legalizing online poker would be like opening Pandora’s Box.
Many critics have attacked his argument and stated that expanding player pools is necessary to keep the industry alive. Alex Dreyfus, the owner of the Global Poker Index, said that both the government and gaming community would benefit from a larger player pool. The government would generate more taxes and citizens would have access to larger prizes. Dreyfus, Vilotte and other experts hope that Parliament will change its mind before revenues slide further.