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California Online Poker Association Launches Ad Campaign

With the California set to wrap up its final month of business in October, the California Online Poker Association (COPA) has begun airing a series of ads urging state lawmakers to pass Senate Bill 40, which was introduced by Senator Lou Correa.

The ad mentions the state's big budget deficit in its ads, noting that online poker is a solution. The ad states: "Unfortunately, nurses, police, fire and services for the poor and disabled will all be cut again if California doesn't find $4 billion in new revenue by December," the advertisement warns. "There is a solution. By approving online poker, California has the ability to tap $250 million in new money immediately and billions in years to come."

Additionally, the ad calls listeners to action by saying, "Tell the politicians in Sacramento to authorize online poker now. California needs the money and Californians need the jobs."

The COPA ad campaign is backed by the Morongo and San Manuel bands of Indians in addition to some land card rooms, but has met some opposition among many other state gaming tribes. California Tribal Business Alliance Chairman Robert H. Smith issued a letter to the state Legislature, asking that they do not act on internet gambling with the final month of business approaching.

"Even though there have been hearings on the matter of intrastate Internet poker, many fiscal, legal, technical and policy related questions must be resolved before adoption of any intrastate Internet gaming legislation," Smith wrote.

"There are numerous stakeholders who stand to be irreparably harmed should legislation be 'ram-rodded' through this legislative year and this surely would be a disservice to ALL Californians, Tribal and Non-Tribal, alike," Smith added.

"For these reasons, we believe the Legislature should not take any action on intrastate Internet poker legislation during the final month of the legislative year and should instead opt to utilize the interim to work with all interested parties to develop a consensus bill."

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