New York has passed a bill to legalise Daily Fantasy Sports.
The New York Assembly passed the bill on Saturday 18th June, voting 45-17 in favour.
The bill needs to be signed off on by State Governor Andrew Cuomo, but things are looking good so far for DFS fans and operators.
This legislative decision came after pressure to reach a decision before the year’s deadline.
Great News for New York Daily Fantasy Sports Fans
The bill will allow the U.S. Gaming Commission to regulate New York daily fantasy sports, defined as legal games of skill.
This decision is great news for New York Daily Fantasy Sports fans, who make up 10% of the national DFS playing population. This means it’s a great win for DFS operators too, such as big U.S. players DraftKings and FanDuel.
The bill has certainly come in good time. As bill supporter John Bonacic (Senator for R-Orange County) commented:
“With [American] football season around the corner, you are going to make a lot of New Yorkers very happy.”
A Relief for DFS Operators
FanDuel, DraftKings and Yahoo all agreed to shut down their DFS operations in New York this March. This was due to Attorney General Eric Schneiderman accusing the operators of violating state laws against online gambling.
Now these operators’ fortunes seem to be turning around in New York.
DraftKings CEO Jason Robbins told TechCrunch:
“To see state legislatures and policy makers around the country take action to address and welcome a burgeoning industry is truly special. To have New York added to that list is a wonderful thing.
“I am hopeful that Governor Cuomo will soon sign the bill into law so our fans can get back to playing the games they love.”
The bill proposes DFS operators to pay a tax equal to 15% of their gross revenues. This is after prizes have been omitted. A further 0.5% tax will cover the licensing fee. To be fair, this is a lot better for the companies than not being able to operate at all!
Hopefully Governor Cuomo will pass the provisional bill, so New York Daily Fantasy Sports can return to its full glory. Furthermore, this means you can play against more contestants across the globe.
Why Is DFS Legality So Complicated In The States?
Online gambling is illegal in the United States (though don’t worry, it’s perfectly legal in the UK!)
This is because the U.S. defines online gambling games as games of chance, as opposed to games of skill.
Fantasy sports were previously an exception to this. However, some U.S. States have made daily fantasy sports illegal by classifying it as a game of chance.
On the other hand, other States have categorised it as a game of skill and are officially regulating DFS.
As it stands, 11 States have made DFS illegal, whereas 8 have legalised and regulated it. Others are as of yet undecided on the future of DFS. Check out this map on Legal Sports Report for more.