It has become clear by now that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo does not want mobile sports betting in the state.
Key New York lawmakers, however, will be making a late winter push to override Cuomo’s wishes.
If Assemblyman Gary Pretlow can get five more votes in the state Assembly, having united chambers would make it extremely difficult for Cuomo to veto mobile sports betting as part of New York’s budget.
The state must have a budget in place by April 1.
Pretlow and Sen. Joseph Addabbo Jr. continue to argue that monies generated from online sports betting would help reduce the state’s multi-billion dollar deficit.
“Fueled by the current need for revenue, along with the constant desire to increase educational funding and address the serious issue of gaming addiction, I will continue to work with the Governor’s Administration, my leadership and colleagues to promote the inclusion of mobile sports betting in the 2020-2021 state budget,” Sen. Addabbo Jr. told PlayNY on Wednesday. “I believe that in the end, actual facts and figures, such as the monies lost to New Jersey and the unregulated illegal sports betting in New York, should result in our state realizing that its people deserve to have a safe, convenient and legal way to place a mobile sports bet in New York.”
What is the problem for online New York sports betting?
Cuomo has not directly said what his biggest issue with mobile sports betting is. He has hinted, however, that he may be concerned with a rise in gambling addiction.
Pretlow believes that it may simply be a matter of pride for Cuomo.
“Between me, you and the wall, I think the governor is convinced, but he backed himself into a wall because it’s hard for him to change his position,” Pretlow told Legal Sports Report this week. “If you’ve been negotiating on something for a year and a half, you can’t just change your mind. So we have to force his hand into saying, ‘It’s not me, it’s them.’ And if it’s them, he’ll sign it. He’s not going to veto it.”
Protecting the upstate casinos
Cuomo’s budget plan from last month did offer slight expansion on sports betting. Instead of only being able to place a wager within the confines of one of four sportsbooks in upstate New York, the new plan would allow for bets outside of the actual sportsbook but still within the casinos that house them.
“Current law requires that wagering on sports be exclusively operated in a casino’s designated sports wagering lounge,” Cuomo’s budget proposal said. “The budget ends this restriction by allowing sports wagering outside the lounge, but still within the casino.”
You currently can only place legal sports bets in the state of New York at Tioga Downs, Rivers Resort & Casino, Resorts World Catskills and del Lago Casino & Resort.