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Imagine What Super Bowl 2013 Would Look Like With Single-Event Sports Wagering

Debate Continues on Bill C290 as Senate Returns February 5

TORONTO, Jan. 31, 2013 /CNW/ - Want to bet on the Super Bowl? Great news - all you have to do is select your favourite NHL, NBA, or Premier League team and place your parlay bet! Your bet could already be loser by kick-off but unfortunately that's your only legal option in Canada.

But imagine if Bill C290 was passed. Imagine if the Senate came together and approved a private members bill that would give people a better option than turning to illegal bookmakers or offshore operators to place bets. Bill C290 would amend the criminal code to permit the provinces to offer a single event wager. The Senate resumes third reading debate on Bill C290 on February 5.

And imagine what cities like Niagara Falls, or Windsor, or Vancouver, would look like during Super Bowl?

"Border cities such as Windsor and Niagara would get an immediate competitive advantage," said Bill Rutsey, CEO of the Canadian Gaming Association (CGA). "Casinos could offer sports books, seats would be full, streets would be busy, and it would be a reason for tourists to book themselves into hotels and host Super Bowl parties. I can only shake my head at what a wasted opportunity this year is."

Again, the CGA points to the fact that Canada's law regarding sports betting is outdated, developed before the world knew what the Internet was. It needs to be updated to decriminalize the significant amount of illegal activity that is taking place in order to offer a safer environment for Canadians who choose to participate in sports betting.

"We are now at the stage where we can talk about lost opportunities for communities across the country - such as economic development, employment, and most of all, protection of players," added Mr. Rutsey. "Our current sports betting laws date back to the 1960s when the world was a very different place. It should be a no-brainer to amend the legislation to allow Canadians to place a bet on the Super Bowl without having to combine it with additional outcomes or seek out nefarious means."

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