In America, the Poker Players Alliance (PPA) grassroots advocacy group has expressed its extreme disappointment at the last minute finalisation on Wednesday of regulations designed to enforce the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA).
“Today’s action finalises a truly bad public policy, one that even the banks and Federal regulators called unworkable in Congressional testimony,” said former Senator Alfonse D’Amato, Chairman for the PPA.
“However, the PPA remains optimistic that the new administration and the new Congress will recognise the failures of UIGEA and will act swiftly in the New Year to overturn this flawed policy.”
In April, representatives from leading banks testified before Congress on the ‘burdensome’ and ‘unworkable nature’ of the proposed UIGEA regulations. In addition, the US Treasury and the Federal Reserve also expressed serious concerns regarding their ability to enforce rules associated with the 2006 legislation and the impact that doing could have on the nation’s payment systems.
“Notwithstanding the scepticism about the efficacy of UIGEA and the burden it would place on our already strapped financial sector, the administration, the Treasury and the Federal Reserve dedicated time and resources to get the rules finalised as the first of many Bush Administration ‘midnight’ regulations,” read a statement from the PPA.
“Fortunately, several members of Congress such as House Financial Services Chairman Barney Frank, Senator Robert Menendez and Congressman Robert Wexler, among others, recognise the untenable nature of UIGEA and have sponsored legislation to truly address the concerns over online gaming.”
“We have strong advocates in Congress who recognise the importance of balancing individual freedom and responsibility with the protection of consumers as it relates to online poker,” said D’Amato.
“As such, we believe that in the new political environment UIGEA will be overturned and effective licensing and regulation of online poker will be enacted.”