Movement at last - US legalisation bills hearing date set

Movement at last - US legalisation bills hearing date set

After months of being delayed in the House Financial Services Committee by more pressing economic issues, it looks as if the legalisation of Online Gambling in the United States is about to come back onstage.

Two bills - HR2267 seeking to legalise and regulate online gambling, and HR2266 proposing to delay the implementation of the UIGEA regulations by a year - are scheduled for public hearings by the committee in Washington DC on Thursday, December 3rd 2009 at 10 am.

The hearings will be broadcast over the Web with the link on the committee's website, whilst the hearings will be held in Room 2128 of the Rayburn House Office Building, covering HR 2266, the Reasonable Prudence in Regulation Act and HR 2267, the Internet Gambling Regulation, Consumer Protection, and Enforcement Act. Both proposals were introduced in May 2009 by Congressman Barney Frank, who is also chairman of the House Financial Services Committee.

HR 2266 has 53 bi-partisan co-sponsors, whilst HR 2267 has 63 co-sponsors.

The hearings are the first really major development in the United States legalisation of online gambling since September 2008, when Frank's HR 6870 was approved by a 30-19 margin, but failed to complete the 110th Congress and lapsed.

The House Financial Services Committee is comprised of 41 Democrats and 29 Republicans, chaired by Massachusetts Democrat Barney Frank. Strong opposition to any legalisation can be expected from the leader of the Republicans on the committee, Representative Spencer Bachus, long an opponent of Internet gambling.