Congress Moves to Suspend Internet Gambling Ban!
11 April 2008
It is about time for some good news for a change!! And the ones that have been fighting for this since it was passed in 2006, the UIGEA Bill, maybe finally winning the battle!! After the hearing last week with the U.S. Treasury, they found out just how hard it would be to get this bill enforced.
Now finally we get this fresh off the press, and this is going to make a lot of people very happy. I know it puts a smile on my face!!!
Current law unduly burdens U.S. financial services institutions
WASHINGTON, April 11 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The Safe and Secure
Internet Gambling Initiative (SSIGI) announced its support for new
legislation, H.R.5767, that would prohibit the Department of the Treasury
and Federal Reserve System from proposing, prescribing or implementing any
regulations related to the current ban on Internet gambling, as required by
the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006 (UIGEA). The bill
was introduced yesterday by Reps. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) and Ron Paul
“The Frank-Paul bill would stop the U.S. government from taking any
further steps on regulations that would require all of the country’s
financial institutions to block Internet Gambling payments,” said SSIGI
spokesman Jeff Sandman. “It’s a bold move, but a necessary one, in light of
the warnings from the Treasury and Federal Reserve that they did not know
how to write regulations to solve the problems created by UIGEA. Further,
witnesses representing a broad spectrum of the financial services community
unanimously stated that the current ban on Internet gambling is dangerous
to the payments system and ineffective in stopping people from using the
Internet to play poker, make bets on horses, or engage in other types of
The current Internet gambling ban creates significant additional
burdens for U.S. financial institutions, which say that it is unfair to
turn them into the Internet gambling police at a time when their undivided
attention ought to be on the economy.
Testimony before Congress last week offered proof that financial
services institutions would face serious regulatory burdens in attempting
to enforce UIGEA and related regulations, which is unlikely to stop
millions of Americans from gambling online.
Representatives from the Credit Union National Association, Financial
Services Roundtable, American Bankers Association and Wells Fargo & Co.
testified about the burden they would unnecessarily face before the House
Committee on Financial Service’s Subcommittee on Domestic and International
Monetary Policy, Trade, and Technology on April 2. The current UIGEA law is
ambiguous and allows for multiple interpretations of what may or may not be
Their comments reflect the concerns echoed in the more than 200
comments submitted to the Department of the Treasury and Federal Reserve
Frank introduced legislation last year, the Internet Gambling
Regulation and Enforcement Act (H.R. 2046), that would regulate Internet
gambling. The bill would require licensed Internet gambling operators to
put in place safeguards to protect against underage and compulsive gambling
and ensure the integrity of financial transactions.
A companion piece of legislation to the Frank bill introduced by Rep.
Jim McDermott (D-WA), the Internet Gambling Regulation and Tax Enforcement
Act of 2008 (H.R. 5523), would ensure the collection of taxes on regulated
Internet gambling activities. According to a tax revenue analysis prepared
by PricewaterhouseCoopers, taxation of regulated Internet gambling is
expected to generate between $8.7 billion to $42.8 billion in federal
revenues over its first 10 years.
About Safe and Secure Internet Gambling Initiative
The Safe and Secure Internet Gambling Initiative promotes the freedom
of individuals to gamble online with the proper safeguards to protect
consumers and ensure the integrity of financial transactions. For more
information on the Initiative, please visit http://www.safeandsecureig.org. The
Web site provides a means by which individuals can register support for
regulated Internet gambling with their elected representatives.