Pennsylvania Senator Seeks Credit Card Ban for Online Gambling


Pennsylvania state Sen. Wayne Fontana is championing a cause to address concerns surrounding the intersection of credit use and online gambling. The legislative push is aimed at amending the rules that currently allow Keystone State residents to use credit cards for funding various forms of digital gaming. This move reflects a cautious stance against the potential exacerbation of financial struggles due to gambling activities.

Fontana’s legislative proposal seeks to alter the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board’s regulations, which at present permit the use of credit cards for depositing funds into iGaming, iLottery, online sports betting, and fantasy sports accounts. The concern hinges on ease of access and the associated risk of developing gambling disorders. A telling statistic has emerged from a 2022 Online Gaming Report, indicating that over a third of the state’s online gamers have experienced at least one issue related to gambling.

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The state had broadened its gaming horizons in 2017, legalizing iGaming, sports betting, and fantasy sports, alongside the establishment of mini-casinos and gaming services at truck stops. Fontana, pointing to burgeoning credit card debt among Pennsylvanians—with an average balance surpassing $5,600—attributes the rise not only to inflation but also to unchecked online gambling, which tends to attract high-interest rates on credit card balances.

Moreover, Pennsylvania’s gaming industry, a formidable entity by all accounts, has carved out a spot for itself in the top three nationwide, coming in behind only Nevada and New Jersey. Last year, a staggering nearly $5.7 billion in gross gaming revenue was recorded. Both iGaming and sports betting were significant contributors, reaching new heights in recorded losses by players.

As state-level action becomes increasingly necessary to curtail the adverse financial consequences of online gambling, legislators across nearly 40 states that have legalized sports betting are taking notice. Some, including Iowa, Tennessee, and Massachusetts, have already instituted credit card bans for sports betting. Yet, the swell in credit card debt isn’t limited to Pennsylvania—an upward trend observed nationally, with the Federal Reserve documenting a leap to $1.13 trillion in outstanding balances at the end of the year.

Wavering between the potential for exhilaration and financial peril, online gambling remains a double-edged sword. Still, those enticed by the world of online casinos, where chance and skill converge amid the clamor of virtual slots and the swift dealings of digital card games, will find lucrative options and insightful information. For our Canadian readers, a seamless path to discovering the finest gaming experiences of the month lies ahead. Here at West Island Blog, we list the top online casinos, ensuring that your quest for premier online play is both safe and thrilling. Join us as we guide you to the epicenters of online play where jackpot dreams become a tangible pursuit.