Senator Addabbo Jr: Gambling revenue going out of NY makes me sick!

“Gambling revenue going out of NY makes me sick!”, – Senator Addabbo Jr on development of the NY state online sports betting policy during betting on sports USA summit #SBUSA on Tuesday, November 5. 2019. He predicts mobile betting is legal in NY in 2020.

Joseph Addabbo, Jr. on sports betting bill in New York 2020
Joseph Addabbo, Jr. on sports betting bill in New York 2020 at the Sports Betting USA 2019 Summit in NYC.

Speech transcript:

“Yes, we have sports betting in New York state, but you have to go up to 2 hours to reach one of the 4 licensed casinos to place a bet in person. Or you get an Uber, you go 20 minutes, cross the border to Jersey and place a bet there. This is the hardest topic nationally in our state right now.

I used to talk about sport betting in New York, I used to say New York is a disabled car on a side of the road not moving at all while we are watching other cars pass us on the right lane, left lane etc. We remain on the same place. Not anymore, though. We now allow sports betting in New York (upstate casinos). But still the cars are passing us by. We looked at the numbers we did in our state (September 2019) and we appreciate that: $2.3 mln. We never had that revenue, it is great. But let’s look at Jersey, our neighbour in September made $38 mln in revenue. And the portion of this 38 mln is our state money.

Geocomplay said that 25% of Jersey’s revenue from sports betting is from New York. It made me sick.

We see our revenue go out of our state to New Jersey. With all the respect, congratulations! It is $9 mln of our money that we should have had or our education system should have had. It is in NJ.

We are surrounded by other states doing great: New Jersey, Pennsylvania, soon Connecticut. So we sit back in that car and see other cars passing us. We used to upfront. How long can New York state sit on that right lane. How long can we lose the educational funding and jobs?

I think the time has come. We are going to change that in 2020. It is the year we realize the revenue we are missing out. We are facing a $3 bln budget deficit and in an election year it is not the greatest thing to raise taxes, so we would go search for new revenue streams, and here is mobile betting. The new NY sports betting bill will address the problematic gaming of course. So we have to choose, whether we drive our car or remain on the side lane. I think mobile betting is going to be legal in New York state in 2020″.

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