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Gov. Andrew Cuomo Says He Wants to Legalize Sports Betting in New York

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJanuary 15, 2019

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo delivers his State of the State address and executive budget proposal at the Hart Theatre on Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019, in Albany, N.Y. (AP Photo/Hans Pennink)
Hans Pennink/Associated Press

New York governor Andrew Cuomo wants his state to be the next to legalize gambling on sports. 

"Let's authorize sports betting in the upstate casinos," Cuomo said Tuesday in his State of the State address, per David Purdum of ESPN. "It's here. It's a reality, and it will generate activity in those casinos."

New York Assemblyman J. Gary Pretlow believes it is "90 percent" likely that sports betting would be approved in 2019 and he personally plans to introduce legislation to get it moving.

A Supreme Court ruling in May struck down a federal law banning sports betting, allowing each state to make its own decision on the subject.

Neighbor state New Jersey legalized sports gambling in June and it has taken off at an alarming rate. According to Bet New Jersey, about $16 million was wagered in the first month but more than $300 million was wagered on sports bets in both November and December.

According to the Associated Press, (via NJ.com), casinos have totaled $1.24 billion in wagers since it was first legalized, which has equaled $94 million in revenue over the course of about six months.

This has led to $10.4 million going to the state in taxes.

New York clearly sees an opportunity to capitalize on a similar move if it can legalize gambling over the next year.

A 2013 law already paved the way for Del Lago Resort, Tioga Downs, Rivers (Schenectady) and Resorts World Catskills to offer in-person sports betting, so they would likely be the first to benefit from any law changes.

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