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Mississippi Loses Potential Revenues with Legalization Rejection

Online casino legalization prime supporter Mississippi Democrat representative Bobby Moak had again introduced the bill just recently for the second time at the House Ways and Means Committee. The bill that could have legalized operations in the state for poker and casino online and established the Mississippi Lawful Internet Gaming Act of 2013 has again been rejected. This has been the hot topic for many Internet gambling forums and on sites like Online gamblers from in and out of state were very disappointed with the announcement posted on the Mississippi legislature’s website saying that the Bill HB 254 that is identical to its predecessor HB 1373 was also trashed as soon as it was introduced to the committee.

The HB 254 could have brought Internet gambling to life in the state of Mississippi. It could have allowed the state to impose the five percent tax to prime casino online operators’ gross revenues. A huge part of the collected tax could have gone to the Mississippi Gaming Commission Fund that would run programs aimed to save problem gamblers and fight against Internet gambling related crimes. The HB 254 allotted 75 percent of these taxes for these programs while the rest will go to the General State Fund.  It is sad to know though that it is no longer going to happen. The proposed bill also requires all license applicants to pay a non refundable deposit of $100,000 in order to be allowed to operate in the state. The proposed bill says that the operator would have to pay $100,000 and higher to the State General Fund every year and another $100,000 to the Mississippi Gaming Commission Fund. The renewal fees could have been set around $100,000.

Prime online casino proponent Moak explained that his reason for re-introduction of the bill is to curtail illegal gambling operations. He said that the licensing system will protect the minors from these activities and fund programs for vulnerable individuals. The bill also included means and ways to collect more revenues from taxes, generate more jobs and finance developmental projects. Moak reiterate that if the bill was passed, there would have to be a strict criteria brought in place that would ensure that the people who will facilitate the industry and all casino online operators are of good character and fitness.

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