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US players - do your bit!

Discussion in 'Casino Industry Discussion' started by jetset, Jun 6, 2007.

    Jun 6, 2007
  1. jetset

    jetset Ueber Meister CAG

    Occupation:
    Senior Partner, InfoPowa News Service
    Location:
    Earth
    FRANK CALLS FOR SUPPORT ON HR 2046 (Update)

    House Financial Services Committee to hear statements on regulation of online gambling this Friday

    Spokesmen for Congressman Barney Frank have again reminded the online gambling community that support for the Congressman's legislation seeking to regulate and license online gambling in the United States is important.

    Kelly Larkin, the director of scheduling for Frank's House Financial Services Committee said that it could be "vital" for citizens who support the Congressman's proposal to contact their individual state political representatives to stress their support.

    Frank's Bill HR 2046 the Internet Gambling Regulation and Enforcement Act, proposing regulation and licensing is scheduled for a hearing by the Committee mid-morning this Friday (June 8) as previously reported by InfoPowa.

    Larkin says that each call should be unique, explaining briefly how the sender feels. Emails should be original but brief and sincere. Larkin suggested that possible statements might cover the need to exclude problem or underage gamblers by regulating online gambling venues and insisting on adequate precautions as a prerequisite for a license in the USA. Opposition to the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement and its inequalities may be another subject to address.

    Exhaustive lists of US state representatives, together with full contact addresses are available at major portals such as Casinomeister.com and Casino Gambling Web.com.

    Frank sent a letter to all congressmen this week explaining his bill, Larkin revealed, reiterating that voters calling before the meeting would be vital for getting representatives on board with regulation.

    HR 2046 specifically aims to amend title 31, United States Code, by providing for the licensing of Internet gambling facilities by the Director of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network.

    The House Financial Services Committee will hold a hearing entitled "Can Internet Gambling Be Effectively Regulated to Protect Consumers and the Payments System?" on Friday, June 8 at 10 a.m.

    The witness list for the hearing includes Howard Lederer, a member of the Poker Players Alliance Board of Directors, and Radley Balko, senior editor of Reason Magazine. Both have expressed strong opposition to UIGEA's and are in favour of regulating Internet gambling in the U.S.

    Gerald Kitchen, CEO of SecureTrading, a UK-based Internet payment service provider, and Jon Prideaux, chief executive of Asterion Payments, will also speak during the hearing. SecureTrading's Web site claims that it is able to "virtually eliminate risks such as underage gambling, money laundering and abuse by organized crime and fraud against consumers."

    Baptist minister Greg Hogan may testify. Hogan's son was the subject of a 2005 high media profile criminal case and is currently serving a sentence of imprisonment in Pennsylvania. He was found guilty of robbing a bank to pay off debts to his fraternity brothers who helped him fund Internet poker accounts.

    The hearing will be the first Congressional discussion on Internet gambling since the UIGEA, which bans financial transactions with online gambling companies other than those "exempted" such as horse racing, state lotteries and fantasy sports, became law last October.
     
  2. Jun 8, 2007
  3. jetset

    jetset Ueber Meister CAG

    Occupation:
    Senior Partner, InfoPowa News Service
    Location:
    Earth
    House Financial Services Commitee hearing today

    Release from the SSIGI:


    WASHINGTON, June 8 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --

    Top experts testified today before the House Committee on Financial Services and offered further evidence to Members of Congress that a regulatory framework for Internet gambling would protect consumers and ensure the integrity of Internet gambling financial transactions. Leaders in the fields of internet payment processing, identity identification and online safety described how existing systems and technology have proven successful in combating underage and compulsive gambling and protecting against money laundering, fraud and identity theft.

    "It was made clear at today's hearing that online gambling can be effectively regulated," said Jeffrey Sandman, spokesman for the Safe and Secure Internet Gambling Initiative. "Instead of prohibiting Internet gambling, which is futile, the government should regulate and tax Internet gambling to ensure proven and effective security controls are implemented to protect consumers and capture billions in revenue that is needed for critical government programs."

    Today's hearing provided additional momentum by clearly demonstrating how regulated Internet gambling could protect against underage and compulsive gambling and ensure the integrity of financial transactions.

    Combating Underage Gambling

    Andrew Poole, Head of Online Services for GamCare, a charitable organization committed to addressing the social impact of gambling, provided testimony that a robust regulatory policy can combat underage gambling and manage the potential for harm through gambling online.

    "We are satisfied that if the move towards more responsible operation continues to gather pace, as is increasingly observed across Europe and the rest of the world, that the continued legitimate development of the industry need not be off-set against significant increases in problematic gambling," said Poole. "Robust, formal regulatory frameworks undoubtedly represent the best opportunity for achieving this."

    Addressing Compulsive Gambling

    Keith Whyte, Executive Director of the National Council on Problem Gambling, the U.S. advocate for programs and services to assist problem gamblers and their families, discussed in his testimony the opportunity to use the technology and controls available on the Internet to combat compulsive gambling.

    "Problem gambling is a serious and even life-threatening mental health disorder," said Whyte. "However, the graphical and interactive structure of the Internet provides a revolutionary opportunity to create informed consumers with access to a variety of information designed to encourage safe choices and discourage unsafe behavior. The technology also exists, unlike for other forms of gambling, to allow players and operators to set limits on limits on time, wagers, deposits, etc ... as well as to exclude themselves. Clearly gambling on the internet raises some difficult issues, but it provides theoretical opportunities for operators to deliver responsible gaming programs that meet or exceed current standards in the 'bricks & mortar' gaming industry."

    Gerald Kitchen, Chief Executive of SecureTrading, a payment service provider specializing in the secure processing and settlement of Internet payments, offered in his testimony that concerns raised about Internet gambling are already being addressed by other countries through the implementation of specific systems and technology.

    "The issue of compulsive gambling remains a significant challenge and the approach required to effectively combat this requires transparency and involvement from various stakeholders," said Kitchen. "Payment card holders can be offered the possibility to restrict their ability to gamble on the Internet by way of applying to be excluded via a self-exclusion program. When self-exclusion from Internet gambling is put into effect via the payments system, it becomes impossible for the person concerned to participate in any gambling on the Internet that uses traditional card payments through the payment processor."

    Protecting Against Money Laundering, Fraud and Identity Theft

    Jon Prideaux, Chief Executive of Asterion Payments and a former senior executive at Visa tasked with establishing rules, compliance programs and enforcement rules for the operation of Visa online payment systems, provided testimony that it is feasible to protect consumers in a regulated environment.

    "On the basis of my experience I can unequivocally state that Internet gambling can be regulated, and that abuses can be effectively regulated and controlled," said Prideaux. "Regulation ensures that players get a fair deal and are not cheated. ... We owe it to people who have experienced problems with Internet gambling in the past to introduce a regulated environment where the proper protection can be provided to the vulnerable."

    Clive Hawkswood, Chief Executive of the Remote Gambling Association, a trade association which represents the largest remote gambling operators and encourages social responsibility within the gambling industry, provided testimony that internet gambling can be regulated to protect the payment system.

    "As with all other industries and sectors it (Internet gambling) is capable of control in order to prevent it being used as a source of crime," said Hawkswood. "Within the United States vast amounts of credit card transactions take place on a daily basis. The system is well established and well policed in order to counteract fraudulent and criminal transactions. The only circumstance in which crime can flourish is if the activity is unregulated."

    Additional testimony

    Expert testimony was also provided to the Committee by Radley Balko, Senior Editor of Reason Magazine and Michael Colopy, Senior Vice President, Communications, Aristotle, Inc.

    Transcripts can be found at You must register/login in order to see the link..

    Legislation recently introduced to regulate and tax Internet gambling has helped build support in Congress to allow Americans to gamble online. Congressman Barney Frank (D-MA) introduced H.R. 2046 to establish a licensing and enforcement framework for regulated Internet gambling and Congressman Jim McDermott (D-WA) introduced legislation that would tax online gambling companies and could generate between $6 billion and $25 billion in revenues in the first five years of enactment. These revenues could be used to fund important government programs.

    Safe and Secure Internet Gambling Initiative
     
    8 people like this.
  4. Jun 8, 2007
  5. Mousey

    Mousey Ueber Meister Mouse CAG

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    I've been scrambling trying to find video of the the hearing. I was stuck at work with no cable TV and no internet :p. Hopefully they'll have the transcript up early next week.
     
  6. Jun 8, 2007
  7. jetset

    jetset Ueber Meister CAG

    Occupation:
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    There's a somewhat more balanced report here:

    You must register/login in order to see the link.
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. Jun 9, 2007
  9. footdr

    footdr Banned User: PITA violations of the Forum Rules

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    "CONTACT YOUR REPRESENTATIVES"

    There is a big flaw in the Committe Hearing System" there is no way to contact a committee that is scheduled to hear testimony. Only contact allowed is via your own rep. or committee members website, if they do not block emails from outside their districts. Barney Frank will not allow emails from people outside his district.

    Here is one of the emails I recieved from my REPRESENTATIVIES. The other Rep responded with the very same email. I promptly relied to both. Does anyone do their jobs anymore, I FEEL I AM IN THE TWILIGHT ZONE.

    Same response from Kay Bailey Hutchinson. Mind you may initial email was requesting their support for the Legistlation introduced by Barney Frank, I sited the bill number and mentioned the hearing.

    Their responses are proof that our communications fall on deaf ears.

    The other problem is that citizens should be able to contact the HOUSE committees direct. Who cares if what District we are in. These committees decisions affect citizens of all districts therefore they should accept comments of all citizens. I think I will try to contact the Clerk of the House of Representatives regarding this and see what the response is.

    Also, when I looked up the witness list yesterday all of the people that are listed above in others posts were not listed on the witness list. So what gives?
     
  10. Jun 9, 2007
  11. jetset

    jetset Ueber Meister CAG

    Occupation:
    Senior Partner, InfoPowa News Service
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    Good on you for doing something constructive about your opposition to the UIGEA, footdr.:notworthy

    I think that Frank's appeal to players was motivated by the need for fellow politicians to see that there is substantial resentment toward the UIGEA from the citizenry, and by writing your representatives you have contributed to that. Nothing wakes up a politician more than voters showing an interest in something he or she can turn to political advantage LOL!!!

    I also believe that Frank is trying to draw the attention of often busy and distracted politicians to his effort to regulate and license online gambling, and that is at least partly his reason for running this and reportedly future hearings. This one is certainly generating a lot of mainstream media coverage already.
     
  12. Jun 9, 2007
  13. Mousey

    Mousey Ueber Meister Mouse CAG

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    With a all the emails I've sent... I've received very few replies... and the replies I've received from my down-home bible belt representatives are in the same generic vein as the one you quoted -- although a little more sanctimonious.
    It's frustrating, it's maddening, and it makes me want to tear my hair out because NO ONE LISTENS when we (citizens/voters) speak!!
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2007
  14. Jun 9, 2007
  15. dhayman

    dhayman Dormant account

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    This talk of repeal will go round and round for years, before anything is potentially done. Look how long it took for UIGEA to be passed - Congress was trying for something like this for many, many year. The same will hold true for repeal.

    Additionally, with the current regime in place, there will be no way that anything even gets voted on until after the 2008 presidential election. After a Democrat is elected to the White House, serious discussions will commence, and even then, it will take several years before anything gets done. My prediction is 2011 or 2012, at the earliest, if at all.

    It is much harder to unwind enacted legislation than it is to pass it, even if the legislation is ludicrous and was enacted deceptively. That is just the way it works.

    Until then, UIGEA will be virtually un-enforeceable. The DOJ, with Bush firmly planted behind them, will continue with their raids and subpoenas, to intimidate.......their intimidation tactics have actually been a very effective way to "implement" UIGEA, and scare the general public. Once the 2008 elections are in the book, things will return to relative normalcy.

    1.5 more years of this regime left.............really hard to believe that Bush, Cheney, and the rest of this inept bunch, have had a run for this long.
     
  16. Jun 9, 2007
  17. lots0

    lots0 Banned User - troll posts - flaming PABnonaccred

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    @footdr
    I have been inside the political system for a long time, I can tell you that your opinion has been counted and cataloged, even if you if only receive a stock response letter.

    Thats why Congress has Interns. Unlike Clinton's use of his Intern, most of congress uses their Interns for tedious office tasks, like reading constituent mail and email.

    The Interns usually quickly look over your letter/email to decide, what issue you are concerned about and if you are positive or negative (according to them) on the issue. All this info is then entered into a data base. So I guess what I am trying to say is even though it ain't very personal, your opinion usually gets counted.

    One last thing, you may not be able to email Frank, if you don't live in his State. But no matter where you live you can send him a snail mail or pick up the phone and call his office or you can FAX him ( 508-999-6462 Fax:508-999-6468 ) All three of which, carry far far more 'weight' with a Congressman than an Email does.
     
    2 people like this.
  18. Jun 9, 2007
  19. silcnlayc

    silcnlayc Just one more spin pleez! CAG MM PABnonaccred PABaccred

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    Write your congressman! Need to voice our support badly!

    Bill to legalize online gambling is off the table
    Saturday, June 09, 2007
    Sabrina Eaton
    Plain Dealer Bureau
    Washington- A bill that would legalize and regulate many forms of Internet gambling will be put on hold while its author, House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank, attempts to draw a better political hand.

    "There are more votes for my position now than there were a year ago, but there aren't yet enough," Frank said after a hearing at which Barberton minister Greg Hogan Sr. described how his son, Greg Jr., robbed a bank to pay Internet poker debts.

    Frank, who believes the current ban on Internet gambling interferes with Americans' personal freedoms, says he won't push the bill through his committee until he thinks it could pass the full House of Representatives.

    Financial experts at the hearing delivered conflicting reports on whether gambling Web sites can weed out patrons who are underage or live in states where gambling is illegal. Republican legislators who attended, including Steve LaTourette of Concord Township, expressed opposition to the bill.

    Hogan, who lives in Hudson, listed his son's achievements, which included playing at Carnegie Hall piano recitals and being elected president of Lehigh University's sophomore class, before describing his descent into addiction and the Hogan family's futile efforts to stop it. Greg Jr. is now serving a 22-month prison sentence.

    "Because Greg fell victim to Internet gambling's illusions of quick riches and a shortcut to his dreams, his dreams are in ashes today," Hogan told the committee. "Please refuse this bill, because if we open the door to any type of Internet gambling, we are allowing our college and high school students to play Russian roulette."

    You must register/login in order to see the link.
     
    6 people like this.
  20. Jun 9, 2007
  21. lojo

    lojo Banned User - repetitive violations of <a href="ht

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    Oh boy, they picked the right posterchild. Here's some You must register/login in order to see the link.. Maybe if the kid felt he could go to his father, he would have. And 22 months for robbing a bank? wtf:confused: Paid back a 'couple of hundred dollars' to his frat bros. Me thinks if it wasn't gambling, something else would have got this kid bit in the ass.

    Not surprised Mr. Frank had to table it temporarily. Our best hope now is the injunction in Jersey against gonzo.
     
  22. Jun 10, 2007
  23. Mousey

    Mousey Ueber Meister Mouse CAG

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    I had a cousin (who was diabetic) do himself in not taking his shots when he should and eating KitKats and Mounds candy bars by the bagfull. When do we ban candy? And the preacher's son was of age wasn't he? So he could have just as easily blown his money at B&M casinos.

    I do hope Frank manages to bring this back at some time in the future -- maybe when Ala. Rep Bachus and the like are not on the committee. I was so in hopes this would go somewhere.... **very disappointing**
     
  24. Jun 10, 2007
  25. footdr

    footdr Banned User: PITA violations of the Forum Rules

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    OH MY GOD, THEY ARE MISSING AN IMPORTANT POINT

    Where did his son get the money to gamble with, no one says.

    I am going to guess, credit card offers that are abundant. The prey on college age students. Knowing they will charge the cards to the max and have no way to pay. Offering deferred interest, low intial APR, cash advances, checks.

    I wish someone at the hearing would have brought this up, I believe there is a bill that has been introduced that would ban credit card solicitation. This is a big issue, because this is one of the few ways these kids could get into such debt.

    I have two college age boys.THEY RECEIVED TONS OF CHARGE CARD APPLICATIONS IN THE MAIL STARTING UPON H.S. GRADUATION, OFFERING UP TO $500.00 EA. and one son applied for two, got approved for both. He has no job and we pay all of his college expenses, car repairs and insurance.I confiscated them. I charge some of his college expenses on them and pay the bill, so he can establish credit for the future.

    This credit card debt should not be enforceable, because they are extending credit to persons who do not financially QUALIFY. Somehow it would seem targeting this group for finance charges they will surely incur, late fees, etc.,
    should be illegal. Its like giving someone a mortgage you know they can't afford so you can repossess the property after they make x number of payments and then resell it. That is illegal, lenders must follow strict rules when it comes to mortgages and qualifying buyers.

    Same should apply here, as it does for EMPLOYED ADULTS seeking credit.
     
  26. Jun 10, 2007
  27. jetset

    jetset Ueber Meister CAG

    Occupation:
    Senior Partner, InfoPowa News Service
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    Earth
    Referring back to post 10 in this thread (the piece from the The Plainsman)

    This report seems more localised than widespread, and I have been sifting through all the main reports to see where the quote about taking it off the table came from.

    I've come to the conclusion that it could be one of two things, because I just cannot pin it down:

    1) A casual remark or assurance during the proceedings from Frank that he will not put the Bill forward until he is sure of solid support (hence the hearings and publicity) or

    2) One of the many comments he has made previously which has been woven into this story by the reporter - and here I seem to recall Frank saying on several occasions that he would be building support before putting the Bill on the floor.

    I think dhayman is probably right when he says getting the Frank bill through will take time, and the Congressman has never minimised the difficulty of doing so - I think that's why it is important to succinctly record your opposition to the UIGEA with your political representatives.

    I'm encouraged by Frank's politically savvy approach so far, and by growing awareness and support as well as political changes in Washington. My personal opinion is that there will have to be intervening elements that dovetail with HR2046, namely the investigative study proposed by Shelley Berkely et al and supported by the AGA.

    If that produces a positive finding (and exclusion technologies are improving all the time) I think it will give Frank and his proposal a powerful boost. The downside is that we're looking at a minimum of 18 months to 2 years for that to be realised (unless the land gambling industry start pushing really hard for online gambling to expand their revenues)

    In the meantime, the AGA and others have supported the concept of more hearings on this, and the indications are that we will see two or three more such events.

    Reading through several of the early reports on Friday's hearing I get a positive vibe for the way things went. For example as the issue is aired more publicly and in full, we may see more representatives like Julia Carson (D-IN) abandoning their support of UIGEA (see exerpt below)


    QUOTE: The hearing ground to a virtual halt on this [hypocrisy] issue, when Rep. Julia Carson (D-IN) asked the witnesses if people in Indiana could bet on the Kentucky Derby over the Internet, why couldn't they make other sorts of wagers?

    The witnesses – and the committee – sat in stunned silence waiting for someone to answer the question – "...but all that came was a feeble mumble from someone on the panel that it should be legal."

    Minutes later, Carson repeated the question and once again received no answer. She then declared her support for the IGREA and said she was wrong to vote for the UIGEA. UNQUOTE

    I think there are many more developments on the horizon here before things eventually move in the right direction, and I'll close with an editorial opinion that is rather harsh but gets the general idea across from CNBC's "Heat" column:

    QUOTE:

    "Congress is only sticking its head in the sand if it thinks it can stop Internet gambling by choking off its money supply. The public's desire to throw away money is simply too strong and the Internet too vast and free-wheeling to prevent the inevitable. Instead of strengthening illegal gambling, we should bring online casinos into the light with appropriate safeguards to keep children and addicts out. Ultimately, responsible adults should have the freedom to be stupid, as long as they don't hurt anyone else." UNQUOTE
     
    2 people like this.
  28. Jun 10, 2007
  29. lots0

    lots0 Banned User - troll posts - flaming PABnonaccred

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    After reading that article at cleveland.com again. I believe that the reporter is taking something Frank said about building support and twisted it into a incorrect report that Frank's bill is off the table.

    Why would Frank "take the bill off the table" when he admits that support is building... It just does not make sense.
     
  30. Jun 11, 2007
  31. lojo

    lojo Banned User - repetitive violations of <a href="ht

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    I guess I understood, 'off the table' to mean out of conference or commitee, need to brush up on the workings I guess:)
     
  32. Jun 13, 2007
  33. jetset

    jetset Ueber Meister CAG

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    Update - Frank needs YOU!

    FRANK'S NEXT MOVE (Update)

    Public support necessary for IGREA success says press officer

    With the excitement and media coverage of last Friday's generally positive hearings on Internet gambling out of the way (at least for now) the question on many lips is what Congressman Barney Frank's next move will be. His first foray into widely publicising his bill HR2046 Internet Gambling Regulation and Enforcement Act has clearly been a success but where does it go from here?

    The Congressman is an experienced and savvy politician who has already attracted 22 fellow politicians to sponsor his bill, some of whom initially voted for the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement bill which Frank seeks to replace by licensing, regulating and taxing online gambling. And the American Gaming Association has recognised the value of thoroughly examining all aspects of regulation and hinted that further hearings and an independent research study could be useful.

    Frank is playing his cards close to his chest, saying only that he will continue to promote the bill and gather further political support for it before presenting it for debate and vote on the House floor.

    This week his press aide Steve Adamske reiterated the Congressman's tactics and again emphasised Frank's view that the legislation's chances of moving forward will be significantly improved if enough American voters contact their Congressional representatives to draw attention to HR2046 and let them know they would like to see the bill pass.

    "The success of this legislation all depends on people out there in America contacting their members of Congress to increase support for this," Adamske said. "The more support we have, the better off we will be."

    Detailed contact details listed by state and representative for all members of Congress are available from online gambling information portals like Casinomeister.com.
     
  34. Jun 21, 2007
  35. jetset

    jetset Ueber Meister CAG

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    Update

    Good piece by Aaron Todd at RGT Online, who took the time to approach his Congressional representative to educate him on why the UIGEA is bad law:

    You must register/login in order to see the link.
     

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