HARRISBURG – Supporters of legal skill video games gathered today at the State Capitol to call for the passage of legislation sponsored by Sen. Gene Yaw (R-23) that would establish a taxing structure and regulatory framework for skill video games in the Commonwealth.
Joined by small business owners, veterans, members of the Pennsylvania Taverns and Players Association (PA TAP), and fellow lawmakers, Yaw told attendees the proposal could result in an estimated $300 million in immediate annual tax revenue and would help rid the market of illegal, unlicensed games.
“If you want to know why skill games are important, just walk into a neighborhood market in western Pennsylvania. Visit a family-owned restaurant in Lebanon County or a VFW in Bucks County,” Sen. Yaw said. “Skill games are a piece of the small business economy in our state, and today we heard from supporters from all walks of life on the importance of the revenue they provide. It is time we recognize the benefits of this emerging industry and offer regulatory support, so we can ensure it flourishes-safely and responsibly.”
Among the participants in today’s event was Nicole Miele, owner of Miele Manufacturing, a Lycoming County-based manufacturer of skill game terminals located in Yaw’s senate district.
“Skill games are built in Pennsylvania and 90% of the revenue from the finished products stay right here in the Commonwealth to help support the communities they are found in,” Miele said. “Skill games mean good-paying, family sustaining jobs across the board. As the legal skill game business grows, so does the small business community.”
Under the proposed legislation, which includes a valid I.D. requirement to play and a limit on the number of machines per establishment, all games will be required to be connected to a terminal collection and control system that allows the Commonwealth to monitor all transactions and ensure that all taxes are accrued and paid. Additionally, the legislation will strengthen penalties for those who operate unlicensed and illegal games and gambling devices.
For more state-related news and information, constituents can visit Senator Yaw’s website at www.SenatorGeneYaw.com or follow him on Facebook and Twitter @SenatorGeneYaw.
CONTACT: Elizabeth Weitzel