House Gaming Oversight Committee Minority Chair Nick Kotik (D-Allegheny) announced his plan to introduce legislation to legalize sports betting within Pennsylvania's licensed casinos.
"Sports betting is extremely popular in this state, yet it is going unregulated," Rep. Kotik said. "The intent of this legislation is to provide our casinos with an alternative form of entertainment, while also regulating a popular market.
"While slot machines and table games are a relatively new industry for Pennsylvania, this bill is a direct reflection of the gamut gaming runs and why expanded forms should be considered."
Under Rep. Kotik's legislation, the in-state rules and regulations pertaining to legalized sports betting would be determined by the Gaming Control Board.
Specifically, the bill would create an exemption under the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act that currently prevents wagers from being placed on any professional or amateur athletic event in Pennsylvania.
Additionally, Rep. Kotik is the author of a bill that would authorize specific Pennsylvania airports to operate slot machines within terminal boundaries.
House Bill 1408 would apply to six international airports in the state: Erie International Airport, Harrisburg International Airport, Lehigh Valley International Airport, Philadelphia International Airport, Pittsburgh International Airport and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport."As a whole, we are at a critical time in this state in terms of funding streams and funding needs – ones that go far beyond our gaming industry," Rep. Kotik said. "I welcome a serious discussion on these expanded forms of gaming to not just stay ahead of the curve, but to invest real dollars into where they're needed most to put the state back on track."