1 Governor Neil Abercrombie State Capitol Honolulu, HI 96813 May 24, 2014 Dear Governor Neil Abercrombie, As the Hawaii director of the Poker Players Alliance, grassroots advocacy group with more than one million members nationwide and over four thousand members in Hawaii, I urge you to give serious consideration to licensing and regulating online poker in our great state. Over the past several months, this issue has received significant attention in the media and with state and federal policy makers. I firmly believe that a state-licensed and regulated online poker is the right approach for Hawaii and would serve three purposes: protect consumers, stimulate our economy and creat
e revenue, and preserve individual and states’ rights.
The status quo is not acceptable. Today, citizens of this state have access to online poker, online casino games and online sports betting. At this very moment, people in our state are wagering on a variety of online gaming sites, none of which are properly licensed or regulated by this government. Regulation of Internet poker should not be considered an expansion of gaming. It is about corralling the current unregulated marketplace and turning it into a system that is safe for consumers and accountable to regulators and our government. I urge you to work with our state legislature to establish a regulatory system that will license responsible Internet poker operators and mandate technologies to protect consumers from fraud, eliminate underage access, mitigate compulsive gambling behaviors and establish funding for the treatment and prevention of problem gambling. The system should provide for an open and competitive market that will foster innovation and ensures that all existing gaming interests in the state have the same rights to apply for a license as other entities. It is also vitally important for Hawaii to establish a system that allows for us to share players with other regulated jurisdictions. Now is the time for Hawaii to act. Within the past year three states
Nevada, Delaware and New Jersey -- have authorized and are regulating Internet poker and Internet gaming. Nearly a dozen more states are currently considering legislation.