Looks like the lines are being drawn in the sand in Las Vegas. Shortly after Michael Gaughan broke ranks with other casino owners and announced his support for the Assembly Bill 258, Nevada’s attempt to legalize online poker, the Wynn has now also stated its support.
Assembly Bill 258 is also backed by the online site PokerStars which is the most trafficked online poker site in the world. Now Wynn Resorts Ltd. And PokerStars will stand together in a strategic alliance to try and legalize online poker in the United States.
CEO Steve Wynn said in a statement that law enforcement doesn’t have the tools to stop online gambling. So instead lawmakers should look to “legalize and regulate the activity to create thousands of jobs and tax revenue for the United States.”
What’s at stake for Nevada? According to what economist Jeremy Aguero presented to the legislative panel, “between $2 million and $3.4 million in taxes annually if online poker is legalized in Nevada and up to $65 million if it captured a quarter of the international market.”
The tax revenue is not the only thing that would be brought to Nevada if this bill goes through. Aguero also estimated 1,200 direct jobs and $77 million in direct wages could also be added to the state. This echoes what former state Assembly Speaker Richard Perkins, who is now lobbying for PokerStars has said.
“Make no mistake — this is about Nevada jobs, Nevada revenue and Nevada pride. Other states are going to leapfrog us.” He also added, “This may be the single largest step you can take to get Nevada back on track.”