The UKGC To Gather Opinions On Two Issues

Viktor Vangelov | Published 22 Feb 2019, 3:56 p.m.

The UK Gambling Commission yesterday invited all stakeholders in the gambling industry, as well as members of the public to give their views and opinions on two separate issues in their attempt to prevent problem gambling, i.e. to deal with gambling-related harms.

The first issue is online gambling with credit cards, the second is improving control measures on Category B gambling machines. 

Credit Card Gambling

There is a reason why credit card gambling is considered problematic. Namely, credit card gambling is gambling with borrowed money and this in itself is to be considered risky behaviour. The Commission is still considering whether there should be restrictions on credit card gambling, or an outright ban. It is clear that there will be a decision on the issue, but not what they will determine. 

Last year, the RGSB (Responsible Gambling Strategy Board) gave their view on the matter and reported to the UKGC and in the past period the Commission was gathering data on the matter. 

It has been concluded that operators don’t always have information on whether a player is using a credit card or different kind of a card go gamble. 

B1, B2 And B3 Gambling Machines

When it comes to category B2 machines, the Government already reached a decision to limit the maximum stake to just £2, from the previous maximum limit which was £100. On the other hand, the limit on category B1 machines is £5 and these machines can be found in casinos. On the other hand, you can bet only £2 on B3 which are placed in betting shops, bingo halls and arcades. B1 and B3 are up to eight times faster than B2 machines. 

The Commission has already advised the Government to explore options that will increase the level of protection. Some options have already been explored, including using time limits, alerts and messages about safe gambling. 

The Commission chief said that they are exploring measures on both mentioned issues. 

Kentucky And North Dakota Sports Betting Bills Advance

The Kentucky sports betting was approved by the Committee and will be moved for a vote in the House of Representatives. The Committee of House Licensing, Occupations and Administrative Regulations passed the bill with an overwhelming majority.

The bill was supported by a bipartisan group of lawmakers including Republican Adam Koenig who is one of the vocal supports of sports betting legalisation. Kentucky is one of the states that pushes sports betting legalisation aggressively, following the decision of the Supreme Court to abolish the federal ban. 

North Dakota also is one step closer towards sports betting legalisation, as the bill was voted in the House of Representatives. Initially the bill was voted down with 46 votes in favour and 44 against, few votes short of the threshold. But, a similar bill was re-submitted and this was passed with 52 votes in favour and 38 against.

The Senate will held a session on the 27th of February, and other gambling related bills will also be considered. Early this week the state legalised sports betting after passing a historic bill. Punters will now be available to place bets at terminals, whereas previously it was only possible to place bets at a race track. The House of Representatives and the State Senate in North Dakota are controlled by the Republicans.