P.E.I. to hop on online gambling gravy train?

Written By Janice Doughtrey

Hot on the heels of British Columbia, Ontario, and Nova Scotia, P.E.I is now considering making the move to get into regulating online gambling in the region. Why the gravy train metaphor? Well, it’s quite a coincidence that the P.E.I government would want in on the $50 million plus that Canadians spend a year at offshore gaming websites.

It makes financial sense for provinces, seeing as people are not going to land based casinos as much, meaning tax revenues are lower than they used to be from the gambling sector. Expanding the gambling sector to online is a new way to bring in that missing revenue. The big motivating factor for Ontario alone is to help with the $20 million deficit that the province has racked up, and the ambitious promises of the current government.

Finance Minister Graham Steele for Nova Scotia explained on CBC Radio that the reason for why Nova Scotia would be expanding their gambling sector to online is that thousands of Nova Scotians play at unregulated gambling sites. For the safety of those players, a government regulated site would offer responsible gambling features, as well as offer resources to help those struggling with gambling addiction.

Prince Edward Island finance minister, Wes Sheridan shares the same ideas as Steele when it comes to the security of it’s players. It’s only a matter of time before this trend catches on to all provinces, but will it create more problems than solve?

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