A bill proposed in the New York State Assembly could legalize online poker in New York, if passed by the Assembly and State Senate and signed into law by Governor Kathy Hochul.

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Bill A01380, proposed in the New York State Assembly by Assemblyman J. Gary Pretlow, would reclassify poker as a game of skill rather than a game of chance, and open the door for online poker to be legalized in New York.

New York Online Poker
Michal Parzuchowski/Unsplash

The summary of the bill states that New York would allow "certain interactive poker games be considered games of skill rather than games of luck; includes definitions, authorization, required safeguards and minimum standards, the scope of the licensing review and state tax implications; makes corresponding penal law amendments."

Previous attempts to pass a bill legalizing online poker have failed in New York, but with the recent legalization of sports betting and the record revenue driven by it, online poker may finally have a future in the state.

For poker fans, it can be difficult to find a place to play outside of informal games with friends. Binghamton poker fans are fortunate that Tioga Downs Casino Resort is only a half hour drive to the west, but for others who may not have a casino in their backyard it can be tough to play as much as they might like.

Legalizing online poker would provide those fans of the game an outlet to play without needing to spend over an hour in the car each way. And while tax revenue taken from online poker could never stand up to that of sports betting, legalized gambling has put a lot of extra revenue in New York's budget in just one year.

So is 2023 the year that online poker is legalized in New York? You'll have to wait and see.

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