Albany lawmakers gamble with legalizing online poker

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) – A panel of lawmakers in New York is taking a look at a proposal to legalize online poker in the state.

The Senate Standing Committee on Racing, Gaming and Wagering meets Wednesday to review legislation that would authorize, license and tax Internet poker games. Those under 21 would be prohibited from playing the online games.

The committee’s chairman, Republican Sen. Jon Bonacic, has supported the idea in the past, but his proposal faces big obstacles in the state Assembly.

Internet gambling has divided the gambling industry in the past, with some experts seeing virtual gambling as an opportunity and others as a threat to traditional casinos.

A state casino board has recommended casino licenses for three proposed Las Vegas-style casinos and plans for a fourth are under review.

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