New legislation introduced in Canada regarding online sports betting

Ontario is debating gaming regulation.
Ontario is debating gaming regulation.

NDP MP Brian Masse recently introduced Bill C-221, known as the Safe & Regulated Sports Betting Act, which aims to amend the country’s criminal code.

Canada.- NDP MP Brian Masse from the Windsor-West constituency, has introduced Bill C-221, known as the Safe & Regulated Sports Betting Act, with the purpose of amending Canada’s criminal code. Recently, the Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce released a statement saying that it was convening a strategy session in the capital the day before Bill C-221 is due for a second reading. This strategy session will also include representatives of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, the Canadian Labor Congress, the Canadian Gaming Association and other industry interested parties who back up the bill.

Gambling laws in Canada are obsolete and in need of amendments in order to bring the various jurisdictions within the country in line. There were positive steps during the last administration to change at least one aspect of the current wagering legislation. However, the introduction of Bill C-290 during the former Conservative government’s regime was dismissed by the Canadian Senate or Upper House of parliament after it had concluded the required three readings in the House of Commons. The Bill was intended to amend the law regarding the single-game wagering legislation.

Under the current laws, Canada’s provincial gambling monopolies are limited to offering only parlay sports wagering. The governments of the provinces which have their own online gambling enterprises believe that giving the punter the opportunity to wager on single-games will allow them to compete in an expanding offshore licensed and regulated environment which Canadian gamblers tend to find way more appealing.

The sports gambling bill is beginning its journey just like the ill fated Bill C290. Firstly, it must go through the third reading and debate in the House of Commons and the Senate where it may face opposition from the National Hockey League and Major League Baseball, both of which were vocal about their concerns last time.