FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
OTTAWA – Tony Baldinelli, Member of Parliament for Niagara Falls, was thrilled with the outcome of a Senate vote today, allowing Private Members Bill C-218, The Safe and Regulated Sports Betting Act, to pass at Third Reading. The Bill now awaits formal Royal Assent, to complete its legislative journey and become law of the land.
“Bill C-218 is a ‘tremendous win’ for Niagara Falls, the Niagara Region, and our local tourism economy”, said Baldinelli. “Legalizing single event sports betting was a priority of mine since I was elected. I am thrilled my Conservative colleague was able to sponsor this Bill when he did, and I was able to do my part in helping to pass this important legislation through parliament.”
This Bill was introduced in February 2020 by the Conservative Member of Parliament for Saskatoon-Grasswood, Kevin Waugh. Since its introduction, MPs Waugh and Baldinelli have championed the Bill, which gained critical support from Members of all parties in the House of Commons, as it progressed through the legislative process. Newfoundland and Labrador Senator David Wells sponsored the Bill in the Senate.
“Having single event sports betting now legal in Canada will be a significant draw for our tourism economy and local casinos. It means we can now compete effectively against our American counterparts on this. Legalizing this activity will also take a significant source of funding away from criminals and organized crime.”
Mr. Waugh concurred with MP Baldinelli’s assessment.
"The passage of The Safe and Regulated Sports Betting Act and the legalization of single-event sports betting is a major victory for Canadians and their communities. No longer will unregulated criminal organizations and offshore websites be the sole beneficiaries of this $14 billion industry. Instead, the economic opportunities offered by single-event sports betting will create jobs and growth in communities here at home in a safe, regulated market that protects consumers, communities, and the integrity of sport", MP Waugh said.
Explaining why the legislation is important to him, MP Baldinelli said, “C-218 will help accelerate local tourism recovery from this devastating pandemic, and it will result in new jobs, new investment, and growth in our local tourism economy.”
Niagara Falls is home to two major casinos, Casino Niagara and the Fallsview Casino and Resort. As the largest employer in the Niagara Region before the COVID-19 pandemic, the casinos provided 4,100 direct jobs in Niagara Falls.
MP Baldinelli was pleased this important initiative crossed the finish line.
“Canadian sports betting enthusiasts have waited long enough for this change.”
Communications Advisor and Legislative Assistant
Office of Tony Baldinelli, MP for Niagara Falls
Special Advisor to the Conservative Leader on Tourism Recovery