by Hillary LaClair, Senior Editor
April 8, 2009
While online casino gamblers have expressed a great deal of frustration with Congressman Barney Frank for having delayed the reintroduction of his bill that would repeal the UIGEA (Unlwaful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act), the Chairman of the US House Financial Services Committee told Gaming Intelligence that he will again propose the legislation.
“Continuing his efforts to dismantle the anti-online gaming legislation passed by the Bush Administration, Congressman Barney Frank will introduce a bill which would establish a licensing and regulatory framework for online gambling operators before the end of April as a standalone bill,” the newspaper read.
While the UIGEA was tacked onto the Safe Port Act of 2006, Frank told the newspaper that the Gaming Regulation and Enforcement Act (H.R. 2046), would be a standalone bill. Experts feel that this may make the bill’s passing more difficult, but Frank told the press that it would be ‘inappropriate’ to practice the same methods of the Republicans that passed the UIGEA.
“That is not my intention. It would be a mistake. I want to do this with hearings, discussions and votes,” said Frank.
“We welcome the standalone bill, which would allow for a thorough discussion of all the issues relating to regulations and consumer protections,” said Jeffrey Sandman, spokesman for the Safe and Secure Internet Gambling Initiative which supports Frank’s efforts. “The excitement over Congressman Frank’s bill that it would create an environment that would protect American consumers and include safeguards against underage gambling and compulsive gambling, which don’t exist right now.”
Frank first introduced the bill to Congress in April of 2007, where it was co-sponsored by 48 other U.S. representatives, but was not able to move out of committee and earn a floor vote in the House.
“After the break, definitely in April,” said Frank when he was asked when he will introduce the bill again.