Canadians will have another chance to gamble on sports in their casinos when lawmakers get to consider a new legislation on sports betting. The bill is being introduced by Brian Masse of the NDP and it raises great hopes that single-game sports betting will now be permitted in the country. This bill follows a 2012 sports betting bill introduced by Joe Comartin, also of the NDP, that was approved by the House of Commons, but ignored by the Senate. Known as C-290, the previous bill was opposed by the senate because of the overwhelming opinion that it had not received enough scrutiny in the House of Commons.
Masse is determined to ensure that the new bill will not meet the fate of the previous one. As a result, he will be working along with representatives from other political parties to smooth out any differences concerning it. However, it is unlikely that Canada’s ruling Liberal party will give much importance to this piece of legislation. As of now, the NDP simply does not have the parliamentary strength to muscle this bill through to law.
At present, there are many restrictions on sports gambling in Canada. Provincial lottery corporations are permitted to offer sports betting as long as they are parlay wagers. If, however, sports wagering could be offered by casinos, then they would get increased business not only from the Canadians, but also from the Americans. As a matter of fact, Masse’s constituency has a large casino known as Caesars Windsor and it stands to gain a lot of business from Detroit, which is across the border from it. Then again, if the United States does eventually decide to legalise sports betting (which might happen sometime in the future even though the sporting establishment is firmly opposed to it), then Canadian casinos will no longer be attractive to the Americans.
Nova Scotia to Conduct Survey on Online Gambling
In related news from Nova Scotia, the provincial government has earmarked $100k to conduct a survey on provincial residents’ attitudes towards online gambling. Organised by the Department of Health and Wellness in conjunction with the Nova Scotia Provincial Lotteries and Casino Corporation, the survey will be created, managed and administered by local market research firm, MQO Research. It will collect data from 10,000 Nova Scotians on their online gambling preferences and habits. The data collection part of the survey should be completed by the end of the year and it will be analysed by the second quarter of the next year.
The increasing popularity of online gambling and the ease with which people get into it has raised a lot of questions. There are valid concerns that the ubiquity of online gambling can lead to addiction and related problems. If this is so, then there will be calls for the government to step in and take remedial measures. Online gambling is highly enjoyable, but this relatively new business has grown at such a rapid pace that its possible ill effects have not been studied entirely.