Just one year ago, online sports betting launched in New York State. Throughout 2022, New York set sports gambling tax revenue records, outperforming every other state in the Nation. According to Governor Kathy Hochul, New York generated an unprecedented $73 million in mobile sports wagering tax revenue during the month of September, 2022 alone. Furthermore, the State collected $542 million in taxes through the week ending October 30, 2022. Add to that amount an additional $200 million that was collected in licensing fees, and you have a huge revenue generator. With this budding industry comes the potentially lucrative opportunity for marketing companies to engage in New York State-targeted gambling advertising. But before embarking on any new marketing campaign, especially where mobile sports gambling only recently became legal, it is important to consult with an experienced New York gambling advertising attorney to ensure compliance with applicable regulations.
As the interest in sports gambling continues to break records in New York, it appears that legislators are looking for ways to safeguard the best interests of State residents. Just last week, two New York Senators, Luis R. Sepúlveda and Leroy Comrie, introduced Senate Bill 1550, which would require all advertisements to include warnings about the potential harmful and addictive effects of gambling. Specifically, the Bill would amend the racing, pari-mutuel wagering and breeding law with respect to all advertisements for gambling and sports betting. The new measure would require such advertising to include warnings about potential harmful and addictive effects of gambling. It would also require the State Gaming Commission to cooperate with the New York State Office of Addiction Services and Supports (“OASAS”) to ensure that all advertisements for gaming activity include a problem gambling hotline number. Such postings would also need to include information explaining how individuals may add their names to the list of self-excluded persons. Please note that the Bill would take effect on the 60th day after it becomes law.
According to the Governor's Office, the revenue from legalization of online sports betting in New York benefits educational initiatives, including efforts to help citizens with gambling addiction. OASAS Commissioner, Chinazo Cunningham, explained that, “OASAS stands ready with services and supports for New Yorkers struggling with problem gambling. This additional revenue from mobile sports wagering will allow OASAS to expand important prevention, treatment, harm reduction and recovery services across the State.” Whether or not the Bill is passed into law, it should be clear that any New York-based gambling advertising campaign should include gambling addiction notices.
While the Bill is still in the early stages in the legislative process, the measure is likely to pass in one form or another. Therefore, companies should start reviewing their New York-based gambling advertising campaigns for future revision. With the potential new law in mind, businesses hoping to enter the New York sports gambling market should take extra precautions before setting up their marketing campaigns. Complying with advertising regulations may appear simple at first glance. However, as many companies have learned over the years, this is anything but the case.
As such, businesses should seek counsel before running any New York-based gambling advertising promotion to avoid potential social media, regulatory and legal challenges.
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The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.
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