Online poker in bars? The new Lei do Xogo of the Xunta de Galicia opens the debate

By Ucatchers

The physical gambling association denounces that the new draft bill opens the door to the installation of machines to play poker or roulette in the bars of the Community.

The hole, for a spin machine (The newspaper)

The hole, for a spin machine (The newspaper)

It is not a question of making our cape a robe. It will not be the first or the last time that someone takes advantage of the wi-fi of a leisure establishment to play a Spin or help out. And what about internet cafes. Access to regulated online gambling is easy, but it requires individual disposition, possessing the means, interest and knowledge to decide to download software on a mobile device of your property.

But what we are dealing with here is the possibility that a hospitality establishment, any bar, can install a machine with access to online games next to the usual slot machines or modern sports betting machines. This may be a reality if the draft bill for the regulation of gambling in Galicia it maintains its current wording and subsequent decrees do not establish more severe limits.

The current Gaming Law in force in the Galician community dates from 1985. The industry has changed overnight since that date, and the Popular Party promised in the 2016 campaign that its reform would be addressed by the Xunta in the event that his candidate Nuñez Feijoo managed to form a government. So it was, and ely’s blueprint began to take shape in 2018.

An entire legislature has already passed, but the PP has renewed its absolute majority in autonomy. The law is still under development, although the draft has undergone important changes recently. Specifically, the current draft was presented by the Xunta’s Xogo Commission on December 20.

The physical game sector, represented by the Galician Association of Operating Companies (AGEO), the Galician Bingo Association (ABIGA), and the Luckia and Comar Groups, have shown a deep rejection of the novelties introduced in the draft. In a meeting held last week at AGEO headquarters, they exposed the most serious discrepancies generated by the new text.

In particular, what concerns them most is thea probable introduction of a new gambling offer in hospitality.

Until now, the Xunta allowed the installation in bars and other entertainment venues of a maximum of one slot machine and one betting machine, without exceeding a total of 3,600 throughout the community. These expedition licenses expire after 15 years and are not renewable or transferable, so the park should be dwindling.

However, the new draft, according to the interpretation of the gambling association, opens the possibility that bars and cafes allow the sale of games of ONCE and State Lotteries and Betting, and with them access to all games licensed by the central government, such as online games.

They interpret, as does the Faro de Vigo, that “Galicia will open the legal path so that you can play poker or another form of online game, such as roulette or blackjack, from community bars and cafes, using this terminals similar to those of sports betting or slot machines “. To add that “the new wording goes radically against the spirit of the regulation and its own explanatory memorandum, which is committed to containing the game.”

The Xunta denies any possibility of regulation that contravenes the powers of the central government, and also recalls that the draft specifies that “the conditions for this new business will be determined by decree.” In other words, possible restrictions could be added in a later phase of the legislation, when the main law is limited with individualized decrees, as is the case with the 2012 Gaming Law, which is also accompanied by decrees that regulate different types of games, such as poker.

In addition, any provider who decides to program a machine that gives access to an online poker room is going to find the problem of access control established by the operators and the generation of deposit and withdrawal mechanics on site. But that would be another song, to discuss with the fait accompli.

Anyway, if someone can go into a bar and, while the coffee is chilling, bet on the winner of the Barça-Madrid, buy a scratch card from the Once, play the Primitiva, look for three cherries and throw some balls at the roulette, ¿ what business are casinos and gambling halls left?

That exposes the bosses, and then we add ourselves, and the danger is online gambling, with deposit limits and player identification? At this rate. It may be easier for the owner of the corner bar to fight you than a reg of the rooms “.frespt”. Much easier.

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