The Iipay Nation of Santa Ysabel has announced that the online poker site it planned to launch earlier this month will be delayed indefinitely, according to PokerUpdate, an online gambling newsletter. Representatives of the tribe told the publication that they have not set a new launch date, pending “double and triple checking everything.”
The article cited speculation that the delay is due to lingering concerns about the legality of the online venture, called PrivateTable.com. Although tribal representatives insist that the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (IGRA) allows the tribe to proceed, the California state legislature has not yet legalized online poker for California residents. Currently, Californians are able to play PrivateTable.com for play-money, but online gambling for real money remains illegal in the state.
However, that could change, according to a second article, this one in CardPlayer, another online news source. In an August 29 story, writer Brian Pempus reported that law professor and gambling expert I. Nelson Rose believes California will legalize online poker next year. Rose believes that “gaming interests in the state are more aligned that ever before on the internet poker issue.” Tribes and commercial gambling companies have lobbied for the change, but Rose said election year politics got in the way of passage in 2014. Nevada already has approved online poker; New Jersey and Delaware have approved multiple online options, including slots as well as poker and other games.