Legislators in the American state of California are so intent on legalizing online poker that they are reportedly looking to attend an upcoming iGaming conference in order to meet with prospective operators.
According to a report from online news portal Gambling911, the western state is looking towards online poker as a way to help solve its troubled economy, which has the second highest foreclosure rate in the country and near double-digit unemployment.
However, Gambling911 reported that the state would not be speaking with PartyGaming due to Anurag Dikshit, the online operator’s billionaire co-founder who recently pled guilty and agreed to pay a USD 300 million fine.
“Too much baggage,” Gambling911.com quoted a source. “California is not going to have an online poker room licensed in the state where one of the founders pleaded guilty before he was even charged with a crime.”
“888 is one that’s been mentioned. They are looking at companies that are publicly traded and 888 fits the bill. They are also trying to settle any issues with the US Government in relation to their taking bets from US customers prior to passage of poker prohibition in 2006, much like PartyGaming, but nobody there is turning themselves in.”
Although California is the world’s eighth largest economy, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger reached a compromise with legislators this week that increased taxes and cut services in order to close a USD 42 million budget deficit.