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Fernando Paes Afonso, CEO of Jogos de Santa Casa da Misericórdia,  stated that “as games of chance have, including those offered by Santa Casa, a pro-cyclical behavior, 2013 results lead us to conclude that there was a transfer of household expenditure from illegal gaming to the games offered by Santa Casa”.  The legislation reverses the Department of Justice’s 2011 decision that clarified the interpretation of the Wire Act. The National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) has strongly opposed that earlier decision and supports the new bill because it would block lotteries from going online.
Recently, there have been reports that PokerStars and the Morongo Band of Mission Indians have been working together to oppose any sort of “bad actor” clause in potential online poker legislation in the state. A “bad actor” clause is the portion of a bill which prohibits certain operators from obtaining a license because of something they did when poker was explicitly prohibited by federal and state laws.  Typically, this refers to a potential licensee continuing to operate in the U.S. after the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 (UIGEA) was passed.
Many “Internet cafes” that have popped up in suburban strip malls and gas stations offer something more than coffee and access to the Web and email. Known as Internet sweepstakes cafes, they sell time on computers that can have the look, sound and feel of slot and video poker machines, sometimes with cash payouts for winners.  State and local authorities say the operations are illegal gambling, but shutting them down hasn't been easy.  More than $10 billion in revenue a year is the incentive to stay in business for these storefronts, numbering in the thousands. For some gamblers, the allure of cybercafe gambling is that the facilities are as near as the local mall or service station.
The Wall Street firm cited worse-than-expected technical issues in its projection, but said it's optimistic about the new industry's long-term prospects. It forecast an $8 billion market by 2020 compared to its initial $9.3 billion estimate.  "While we remain bullish on the online gaming opportunity in the U.S., we are lowering our estimates to better reflect the insights we have gained following the first few months of operations in New Jersey, Nevada and Delaware," the company wrote in a research note.  It also lowered its first full year estimate of New Jersey's Internet gambling revenue from $541 million to $203 million.
“These bills trample on the rights of states, but of greater concern is the fact that they will deny consumers of any meaningful protections that can only be achieved through responsible state or federal regulation. Today, three states are safely and effectively regulating Internet poker. This misguided attempt at prohibition will turn back the clock in those states and destroy the opportunity for others to gain the economic and societal benefits of offering its citizens a safe and regulated place to play online,” said John Pappas, executive director of the Poker Players’ Alliance (PPA). “We hope Senator Graham and Congressman Chaffetz and the other supporters of these bills will sideline any political motivations and choose to support what’s in the best interest of American consumers by reconsidering these bills.”
The two governors use near-identical language at times to pan the “flawed” reasoning of DOJ and call for Congress to restore the previous interpretation of the Wire Act.  “When gambling occurs in the virtual world, the ability of states to determine whether the activity should be available to its citizens and under what conditions - and to control the activity accordingly - is left subject to the vagaries of the technological marketplace. This seriously compromises the ability of states to control gambling within their borders,” Perry  wrote.  The missives from the two powerful and well-known state executives boosts legislation banning Internet gambling from Graham and Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah). The letters are also a boon to casino magnate and GOP donor Sheldon Adelson, who has  formed a coalition calling for the ban.    “Internet gambling is a bad idea, hard to regulate. If you want to gamble, go to a licensed facility. I don’t like the idea of sitting in one’s basement and trying to regulate gambling because I think it’s just very subject to abuse,” Graham said in a brief interview Monday.  “Allowing Internet gaming to invade the homes of every American family, and to be piped into our dens, living rooms, workplaces, and even our kids’ bedrooms and dorm rooms, is a major decision. We must carefully examine the short and long-term social and economic consequences before Internet gambling spreads,” Haley   in the letter.

PGRI NOTE: This ridiculous  posturing and scare-mongering over non-existent threats is a transparent and shamelessly disingenuous attempt to pander to the interests of Big Casino as now represented by the multi-billionaire Sheldon Adelson.  Presumably, other legislators will see through this kind of hyperventilating that is so clearly driven by the orchestrated dis-information campaign of commercial interests.  And hopefully the sponsors of bills that are so contrary to the interests of their own states will be penalized by their electorate.

U.S. casinos may soon have to vet where their high rollers' funds come from under a requirement being developed by the U.S. Treasury Department, according to two people familiar with the matter.  The move is part of a push to address longstanding regulatory and law enforcement concerns that criminals can use casinos, which have not historically been as closely monitored as banks for compliance with anti-money laundering laws, to convert proceeds of crime into money that appears clean.  Existing rules do not explicitly require casinos to vet the source of gamblers' funds.  The new rule is likely to require casinos to get more information about certain customers in order to shed light on high-risk transactions such as international wires and large cash deposits, said the sources, who asked not to be named.  A spokeswoman for a casino trade group, the American Gaming Association (AGA) "Our industry is committed to a culture of compliance and we appreciate FinCEN's open dialogue and look forward to future collaboration,".  In August  Las Vegas Sands Corp agreed to pay the Justice Department more than $47 million over anti-money laundering lapses at its Venetian and Palazzo hotel complex in Las Vegas.

PGRI Note: What this industry needs is uncompromised federal enforcement of the laws and regulations that eliminate criminality.  Referring back to internet gaming, the notion that Sheldon Adelson (the same guy whose company was just charged a $47 million fine for laundering money) is concerned about consumer protection, and that the best way to protect the consumer is to prohibit states and lotteries from regulating the industry, is so stupid that it is hard to believe a federal legislator could try to sell it, no matter how much campaign support they receive.  What’s needed from the federal government is stricter effective enforcement of against criminality, like money laundering.  And federal laws and enforcement mechanisms to prevent commercial online operators from violating state laws and regulations.

A bill to restore a ban on online gaming was introduced Wednesday in Congress.  The bill by Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah., seeks to reinstate federal law to prohibit “all forms of Internet gambling.”  The issue has split the American Gaming Association and provoked a backlash from attorneys general in 16 states focused on worries about crime and money laundering, and potential harmful effects on youngsters and problem gamblers.

PGRI Note: This bill would prohibit Lotteries from selling even their traditional products online.  It appeared a few months ago that this policy was not likely to gain traction with federal legislators.  But there is huge money from Big Casino interests led be Sheldon Adelson of Las Vegas Corp. funding the lobby to gut states’ rights to regulate and tax the industry.  MGM Resorts nd Steve Wynn were supporters of responsible regulation of the i-gaming industry but now they have gone neutral in order to smooth a path for the lobby impose federal government will on the states’ rights to regulate gambling.

“Pollard Banknote is very proud of our 28-year partnership with BCLC,” said Doug Pollard, Co-Chief Executive Officer, Pollard Banknote. “BCLC is a long-valued customer, and we have worked hard to increase sales and offer the Lottery an expanding selection of innovative products and services to meet the consumer behavior of its jurisdiction. We embrace this opportunity to help BCLC continue its impressive growth in its instant ticket category to maximize revenues that support health care, education, and communities in British Columbia.”    “We’re excited to build upon our relationship with Pollard Banknote and grow the partnership that has been forged over nearly three decades,” said Kevin Gass, BCLC’s Vice-President of Lottery Gaming. “The company is known for driving sales and providing leading-edge product innovations and we look forward to bringing some of those new, innovative products that will engage and entertain our customers to the market.”

Public Gaming /Paul Jason -   / Susan Jason -  /Office Phone - + 425-449-3000  
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