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New York Restaurants Want in on Gaming Licenses

Since restaurants in New York are struggling to recover from previous closures, the New York State Gaming Association has come up with an interesting proposal. Recently, the association has urged the Empire State legislature to expand gaming licenses so they can include restaurants and thus help the sector make more revenue and recover from the unprecedented situation.

A survey found that elevated costs, supply chain disruptions, staffing shortages and low profitability have plagued restaurant operators. Prior to the unprecedented situation of 2020, New York had a US$50-billion industry, which produced over US$4 billion in annual sales tax. Now, the state faces a challenge to create a new environment for the sector to get back on track.

Calling to Peruse Sports Betting at Restaurants

Melissa Fleischut, President & CEO of the New York State Restaurant Association, commented that New Yorkers are big fans of sports betting both land-based casinos or via their mobile devices. She added that the Empire State must capture the economic chance and expand the type of licenses available to restaurants and meet consumer demand.

Additionally, she noted that the sector is in a great position of taking advantage of the market and grow the state’s sports wagering landscape. Ms. Fleischut explained that not all restaurants must have sports betting terminals and kiosks and the expansion of the available licenses may not be a silver bullet for the industry, however, it is an option for additional much-needed revenue.

Michele Ciavarella, Executive Chairman of Elys Game Technology, Corp. said the state offers an optimal opportunity for leveraging the enthusiasm of sports betting at retail locations as was shown by the success of mobile sports betting. She further believes that the expansion of sports wagering could play a major role in the recovery of the heavily struck leisure and hospitality sector.

Last month, Governor Kathy Hochul’s office declared that for its first year of mobile sports betting, the state received more than US$900 million in tax revenue. In a press release, the Governor’s office explained that the new market has brought in more than US$709.2 million in revenue, as well as an additional US$200 million in licensing fees from operators.

Bill to Change Gambling Ads

Meanwhile there are lawmakers who are concerned about the possible negative effect of mobile sports betting. That is why in January 2023, democrats Luis R. Sepúlveda and Leroy Comrie presented Bill S1550, which would require all gambling and sports betting commercials in the state to include warnings about a possible harmful effects of gambling activities.

Source: “NY State Restaurant Association Calls for Expanded Gaming Licenses to Include RestaurantsTotalFoodService, February 10, 2023