The state of Utah is currently considering a bill which would continue their prohibition of online gaming should the activity become legal at the federal level. Authored by Representative Stephen Sandstrom, this piece of legislation would lock citizens out of any and all forms of internet gambling. Speaking to the public, he repeatedly stated his desire to keep Utah “free from the negative impacts of legalized gambling.”
“Utah is only one of two states that prohibit any form of gambling,” said Sandstrom, “Hawaii being the other. Unfortunately, this could change soon because Hawaii is currently considering legalizing gaming leaving Utah to fight the principled fight against legalized gambling on its own.”
The Republican rep submitted his proposal, known as House Bill 108, to his comrades in Salt Lake City yesterday. Should it come to a vote, the state’s House of Representatives will have more to weigh than simply the online aspect. Not only does Sandstrom’s bill put the kibosh on internet gambling, but also on the opening of aboriginal casinos, according to iGaming Business.
“Without courageous leadership to block Internet gaming,” he stated, “Utah could see Indian casinos popping up statewide in just a few years.”
So, while the nation as a whole moves toward some form of online gaming regulation, Utah appears to be balking at the possibility. While such a system would surely provide a major chunk of new revenue for participating states, Sandstrom appears to be uninterested.
In a December press release, he was described as a “classic Reagan conservative,” “compassionate and approachable,” and “a trusted problem solver.” Sounds like a nice guy all around. Too bad he’s on the opposite side of the fence.