Connecticut Tribes Want to Offer Online Gambling

Connecticut could be poised to become just the fifth state within the country with regulated real-money on-line poker sites.

Based on comments produced this month by the Mashantucket Pequot and Mohegan tribes, state lawmakers could very well end up acting on legislation in the near future.

A Mar. 15 hearing with the state’s Public Security and Security Committee featured testimony in the tribes in support of bringing real-money games to the internet. In October, nearby Pennsylvania legalized on-line casinos. New Jersey, also a significant player within the region’s gambling marketplace, has a booming internet betting business.

Sports betting, which the U.S. Supreme Court will rule on this year, was coupled using the on-line gaming pitch. On-line sports books could be part of any state’s internet gambling offerings, should it be permissible below federal law. Nevada, presently the only state with sports books, enables so-called mobile sports bets. New Jersey will do so as well if offered the chance.

“I believe that when the two tribes are permitted to operate on-line gaming and sport wagering, they’ll generate greater than $120 million in revenue to the state of Connecticut within the initial five years alone,” a Mohegan Sun representative said in written testimony to lawmakers.

Foxwoods told lawmakers that “based on our estimates coupled having a pragmatic tax price, over the course of 5 years Connecticut stands to collect roughly $87 million in tax income from iGaming, at a price starting at $14.25 million in year one, escalating to $20 million in year 5.”

Despite the synergies, Foxwoods called online gaming “a more lucrative opportunity for the state than sports gambling.” The casino also said that the internet games would be the “strongest opportunity” for government coffers. The tribes estimated that tax revenue from brick-and-mortar and on-line sports betting could be about $40 million more than a five-year period.

Those estimates are based on a 15 % tax rate for on-line gaming and an 8.75 % tax on sports betting win. The tribal groups appreciate gambling exclusivity in Connecticut, which they argue applies to the web and any form of sports betting also.

Connecticut has a population of about three.six million individuals, that is a small market for on-line poker. The state would benefit from partnering with the other online gaming states to be able to enhance liquidity. A five-state online poker player pool in between Nevada, Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Connecticut would contain about 30 million individuals.

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