Maryland Special Session Considers Online Wagering

Published Friday, August 03, 2012 -

The United States has become a battle ground for the liberalization of internet gambling laws within separate states. As the mid-Atlantic region becomes more competitive for the gambling buck small states such as Maryland are considering the implementation of more casino offerings and now online wagering. The House speaker wrote in a memo that internet games will be considered when lawmakers gather for a special session soon to expand gambling. Legislators will be adding table games like poker and a new casino site in Prince George’s County to their agenda at the special session.

Michael Busch, D-Anne Arundel said in the memo, “Since the voters overwhelmingly approved the establishment of a Maryland gaming program in 2008, every surrounding state with a gaming program has expanded to include table games and, in some cases, other forms of gambling,” the speaker continued, “In order to maintain a healthy and competitive gaming program that attracts players from beyond Maryland’s borders and keeps Maryland gamers at home, we must put our gaming program on par with other jurisdictions in the Mid-Atlantic.”

In the close by state of Delaware, Governor Jack Markell signed a motion that authorized online betting in that state. The measure allows virtual slot gambling and table games, as well as expanding the keno offering to at least 100 other web locations. With Maryland in debt by almost half a billion dollars the need for revenues is paramount at this time. The speaker also mentioned in his memo that the goal of the special session is to search out new sources of revenue for the state. The funds gained from expanded gambling offerings including internet betting will help finance education and other bills that have been incurred to maintain its infrastructure. Debate should be lively in this session as opponents to expanded gambling in Maryland are many. The effort must be made, says the speaker to keep up with the competition.

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