California’s online poker bill is headed for a vote on the state Assembly floor after a favourable vote by the Assembly Appropriations committee on 23 June.
The committee officially approved Assemblyman Adam Gray’s AB 2863 legislation, the bill receiving only one ‘no’ vote from the committee, although several members abstained. This sets up what will be the first online poker floor vote by the full Assembly, two-thirds of which need to approve the bill for it to progress to the state Senate.
The bill received a number of amendments before last week’s Assembly committee hearing, mostly concerned with the lingering “bad actor” and “tainted asset” issues surrounding Amaya Gaming’s PokerStars brand, with much of the debate revolving around these hurdles. The bill’s tribal opponents were represented by the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation’s Leland Kinter and the Agua Caliente tribe’s Jeff Grubbe. Kinter said the amendments failed to address PokerStars’ “fruits of corruption”, aka online brands, customer lists and marketing data derived from serving the market prior to online poker legalisation.
..every single concern raised
However, Gray questioned the value of data lists, claiming they’d likely been sold “three or four times” since 2011 and suggested companies could derive more worthwhile data from Facebook.
Ending his appearance, Gray said “every single concern raised” by his fellow legislators was already addressed in AB 2863 but that he would continue to work with his colleagues and poker stakeholders to strengthen the language prior to the floor vote.
It’s unclear when the Assembly might get around to voting on AB 2863, as legislators aren’t in session for most of July.