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Legalizing Online Poker Introduced Through Bill By Senator Menendez

Gambling News - August 6th, 2009 - Written by Glen

menendezThough it has been long in the works, Senator Menendez of New Jersey has introduced his Bill, the Internet Poker and Games of Skill Regulation, Consumer Protection, and Enforcement Act.

This Bill is meant to clear the gray area surrounding online poker. With recent financial seizures and indictments at the hands of the U.S. government, online poker players have been wary about playing what is considered to a culturally influencing game. The UIGEA has created a stigma around Internet gambling and this, S 8309, as well as Barney Frank's take on online gambling, H.R. 2267, both aim to legalize gambling or, at the very least Internet poker.

The Bill states that games of skill, particularly poker, shall be licensed within the U.S., rather than off shore. The licensing process will be rigorous, as each applicant must comply to very stringent and detailed peremeters. Amongst areas that will be checked are criminal and credit history of executive officers, a comprehensive and detailed report on the financial history, as well as a generalization about the company's structure and its affiliates.

In addition to covering the actual licensee, protections for the user will also be in place. A Self-exclusion policy is to be ordered, as well as strict age restrictions that must, under no circumstances, be breached. The legal age for this endeavor shall be set at 21.

Taxes shall be collected as well. The governments rake, so to speak, will be 5% of the licensee's deposits. This will be taken every month. Unauthorized gambling sources will be taxed by 50%. This money will be added to the general coffers, but a $200,000 dollar study on pathological gambling is also set to be funded by the program.

Now that both the Senate and the House of Representatives has released a potential Bill legalizing online gambling, or at least online poker, progress is expected to be made infinitely quicker. The PPA has been struggling for this day for some time now, and a hopeful future for poker players is on the horizon. Congress has adjourned until after Labor Day, though the Bill is expected to pick up shortly there after.

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