California removes online poker initiative from this year’s bal

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Sep 11, 2009 Posted in Poker News | No Comments »

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Several California Card-Clubs and Indian Tribes who were pushing for California to legalize online poker have withdrawn their proposal and plan on reintroducing it next year. A spokesman for the Morongo Indian Tribe stated, “The best option is to regroup and get it done in January.”

Among the card clubs seeking to legalize online poker are the Commerce Casino, Hawaiian Gardens Casino, Bicycle Club Casino and Hollywood Park Casino along with the Morongo tribe. Several Indian Casinos also stand in opposition to the proposal, fearing online poker will cut into their customer base.

A similar measure in Massachusetts failed to meet the requirements to appear on the ballot. However, the Massachusetts initiative was simply seeking to legalize online poker in the state; proponents in California were also looking to establish online poker rooms where they could compete with offshore sites.

At stake is billions of dollars of business for the online card-rooms, and therefore millions in tax revenue for the struggling state –California currently faces one of the worst budget deficits of any state.

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