With less than a handful of days in the 2023 New York legislative session, a responsible gambling bill to create a Problem Gambling Advisory Council (PGAC) is still awaiting its fate.
Passed unanimously through the state Senate on June 1, SB 6701 is hoping for a different fate than the one it suffered at the hands of Gov. Kathleen C. Hochul.
Responsible gambling bill’s fate rests with New York Assembly
Speaking with Bonus.com, Joseph P. Addabbo Jr. said the Senate had done its job, and now things rest in the hands of the Assembly. Unfortunately, the companion bill in the New York State Assembly, AB 1056, hasn’t moved since its introduction on Jan. 13.
Regardless if the PGAC bill passes, Addabbo noted that New Yorkers already have avenues to seek help for problem gambling from the number of New York gambling options in the state.
In March, Hochul issued a statement declaring it Problem Gambling Awareness Month (PGAM). During a meeting highlighting her announcement, the governor was flanked by representatives of the New York Responsible Play Partnership (NYRPP), which includes:
- New York State Gaming Commission
- Office of Addiction Services and Supports (OASAS)
- New York Council on Problem Gambling (NYCPG)
This is the 5th attempt to pass New York problem gambling legislation
As mentioned, this isn’t the first time New York lawmakers have tried passing a bill to combat problem gambling. Efforts to create a PGAC date back to 2015.
The justification of SB 6701 is identical to SB 3103A, a bill introduced in Feb. 2019. The justification for SB3103A reads, in part:
“It is evident that there is a growing need to promote awareness of and access to problem gambling services. The development of a Problem Gambling Advisory Council will help to identify issues affecting those suffering from a problem gambling disorder and recommend ways to make prevention and treatment more accessible throughout the state.”
Last year, both chambers of the state legislature approved that year’s bill – SB409. However, at the last minute, Hochul vetoed the bill on Nov. 23, 2022.
This year’s attempt to pass a PGAC bill is the fifth by state lawmakers.