Gaming Strategy
Featured Stories
Legal News Financial News Casino Opening and Remodeling News Gaming Industry Executives Author Home Author Archives Search Articles Subscribe
Newsletter Signup
Stay informed with the
NEW Casino City Times newsletter!
Recent Articles
Kevin Smith

US State Legislators to Study I-Gaming

9 September 2003

Considering the penchant for U.S. lawmakers to consider prohibiting online gambling instead of regulating it, officials within the Interactive Gaming Council were pleased after meeting Friday in Newport, R.I. with the executive board of the National Council of Legislators from Gaming States.

The IGC, a trade association for the interactive gaming industry, called on two of its high-profile advocates to present its case on how interactive gaming should be addressed to the NCLGS.

Former Indiana Attorney General Jeff Modisett joined Frank Catania, the former assistant attorney general and director of New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement in addressing the board.

Catania told IGN that the IGC presentation was enough to convince the board that further analysis of the industry is needed before any recommendations are made about how to legislate interactive gambling.

He said the board agreed to ask for submissions from various industry groups. The requests for submissions are expected to start soon and will have a 45-day deadline for getting back to the NCLGS. The issue will be re-studied at the council's January meeting.

The IGC will be one of the groups asked to submit a formal report.

Modisett, a former attorney general who tried to create barriers for the interactive gaming industry when he was in office, brought a unique perspective to the NCLGS presentation.

"[Modisett] was able to speak from a first-hand-knowledge perspective of how regulators can't just let it go and prohibiting it isn't the answer," Catania said. "When you have someone like that telling the board that you need to regulate the industry a lot more people are going to stand up and take note of what he is saying and why he is saying it."

For his part of the presentation, Catania gave an overview of the political climate in the United States. He spoke on states' rights and how Indian tribes could be affected by pending legislation. He also touched on the potential role a state could play in regulating online gaming and how taxes generated from the industry could be used to address and minimize the problems associated with addictive gaming and the risk of underage gaming on the Internet.

Although the meeting is only a small step, Catania was glad to see progress made toward regulation.

"We got them at least to the point where they feel they should put together a study on the issue," he said. "They are going to try and get as much information as possible in the next 45 days and then make a determination in January on what to do next."

There was also talk at the meeting of conducting a public hearing after all the submissions are turned in, but a decision on this won't be made until early next year.

The NCLGS as a body can't introduce federal legislation, but its members are often seen as the guiding force behind gambling bills.

The nonprofit council includes members from Alabama, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Texas.

US State Legislators to Study I-Gaming is republished from
Kevin Smith
Kevin Smith