Mississippi Lawmakers Introduce Online Gaming Bill

04/12/2012
By Tommie ClarkGoogle

Lawmakers introduced House Bill 1373 this past week in Mississippi with the goal of creating the Mississippi Lawful Internet Gaming Act of 2012. The Act would regulate all forms of online casino gaming at the approval of the Mississippi Gambling Commission.

 

The bill was proposed by House Minority Leader Bobby Moak who seeks to create a licensing system that grants Internet Wagering Permit holders the authority to provide online casino games to citizens of Mississippi over the age of twenty-one.

 

The bill stipulates that the cost of an Internet Wagering Permit will be at least $200,000 and come with an annual renewal fee of at least $100,000. Permits would last between one and five years.  Upon expiration, they must again go through the process of review and renewal by the Mississippi Gambling Commission.

 

With concerns over residents playing illegal online casino games, House Bill 1373 includes a portion that addresses the issue in thorough detail.  It also addresses the potential consequences if Mississippi does not legalize online casino games. Section one elaborates, “The Legislature finds that since the development of the Internet, millions of people have chosen to engage in online gaming through illegal off-shore operators, and such unlawful gambling is conducted without oversight, regulation, or enforcement, all of which raises significant concerns for the protection of our citizens. Without regulation of online gambling, the public’s trust and confidence in legal gaming is impacted.”

 

Various top USA casinos support regulated Internet gambling, including those with casinos in Biloxi. These include Caesars Entertainment of Grand Biloxi Casino; MGM Resorts International of Beau Rivage Resort and Casino; and Boyd Gaming, which last year bought IP Casino Resort.

 

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