moved for leave to introduce Bill C-290, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (sports betting).
Mr. Speaker, this is a very simple bill, matching the personality and character of the person moving it.
It is simply a repeal of one very small section of the Criminal Code. Its effect would be to allow for sports betting on single sporting events in this country.
This is a very important bill from this perspective. That industry is very big, and it is entirely controlled by organized crime at the present time, both here and in the United States, because it is generally illegal in the United States to bet on one sporting event.
The estimate in the United States is that $30 billion a year is bet on that, all going into the pockets of organized crime and some of it offshore. It is estimated that as much as $2 billion is spent in Canada annually, with all of that money going out of the country to organized crime syndicates in the U.S. and the Caribbean, so it is quite important that we move on this.
The other thing is that there is a national gaming association in Canada. It just completed a study that shows the employment that would be created by making this into a legal business. For instance, in Windsor there will be another 150 jobs either saved or added to the current employment in the Windsor casino. In the riding of the Minister of Justice there is a casino, and a similar number of jobs would either be saved or added. It is job creation.
The Province of Ontario has signalled that it is very interested in placing this operation in the casinos in that province. Other provinces are taking different perspectives on it, but there is widespread support for this bill, and I am seeking support from all members of Parliament when it comes up for second reading.
(Motions deemed adopted, bill read the first time and printed)