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If you are a local to the Marcy area, or really anywhere in Oneida or Madison County, you will have probably been to one of the many casinos in the area.

Maybe you wanted to play some table games, or the slots, or maybe you are a sports bettor looking to place a wager on the Tampa Bay Rays to win the 2020 American League title (which hopefully you did, because you would have got great odds at around +900 before the shortened 2020 season Major League Baseball season began).

Since there is no online or mobile wagering in New York, you headed over to the Yellow Brick Road, Vernon Downs, the Turning Stone, Point Place, or the Lake House at Sylvan Beach to play some blackjack, or to the YBR, Turning Stone, or Point Place to wager on those pesky Rays, who broke the hearts of all New York Yankees’ fans for the 11th year running.

But with the COVID-19 pandemic, things have been different. There are more rules in place to keep everyone safe, some things in the various casinos are still closed, while others have limits. If you click on any of the websites, the first thing that pops up is a health and safety message, telling potential patrons that the casinos are doing everything possible to keep the customers safe.

While the brick and mortar physical casinos are doing as well as could be expected at this time, all anyone wants to talk about is online gambling and sports betting. Last week, a very short exchange from Governor Andrew Cuomo set the state alight with anticipation that 2021 might finally be the year it all changes in the Empire State.

So what did Cuomo say on a televised briefing about COVID-19 that has people so excited?

“Are there other ways to get revenue? How about marijuana? How about sports betting?”

That was it, but it was enough to move the meter all over the place. With 20 casinos already, and eight sports books either open or on the way, Cuomo might be prepared to change his mind and allow online gambling to be legalized in 2021, based on the recent NY reports.

Of course, he only needs to look at neighboring Pennsylvania and New Jersey to see the benefits of online gaming and sports betting. New Jersey has set records in each of the last four months for sports betting intake, going from $667.8 million in August to an incredible $931 million in November. The Garden State is on pace to break the $1 billion barrier for December alone, and go over $6 billion for the year.

Remember, there were little to no sports going on for two months, outside of darts, table tennis, and the occasional soccer match from Belarus, Nicaragua, and Taiwan.

It is coming soon to the Empire State, as it joins the revolution around the country.

If you or anyone you know has a gambling problem, call 1-800-GAMBLER.

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