Online Gambling Bill Introduced in Hawaii

An online poker bill has been introduced to the Hawaii legislature seeking to allow online poker and casino games. The bill would create the Hawaii Internet Lottery and Gaming Corporation with tax revenue benefiting the University of Hawaii and other public school systems.

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Hawaii is the latest state to see an online gambling bill introduced into its legislature.

The bill—introduced by state Senator Will Espero—would create the “Hawaii Internet Lottery and Gaming Corporation.” Tax revenue would be used to benefit public schools and the University of Hawaii system. The bill allows online poker and casino games and has provisions for player sharing agreements with other states.

The bill also calls for online gaming to help boost tourism to Hawaii through “land-based gaming entertainment events,” even though Hawaii currently has no land-based casinos.

Past efforts to bring online gambling to Hawaii have gained little traction and the state is one of the few in the U.S. with no form of legalized gambling or casinos. Still, Espero said that “tens of thousands” of Hawaiians are sending “tens of millions” of dollars out of the state by gambling online illegally via unregulated offshore sites.

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