Bill to Legalize MMA Passes New York State Senate Again
Posted by Jeffrey Harris on 05.13.2014
It still needs state assembly approval...
MMAjunkie reports that the New York state Senate passed, yet again, a bill to legalize MMA in the state of New York. The vote was 44-16 in favor of legalization, and several senators argued to end a band enacted in 1997.
The bill has passed in the Senate for five straight years now. In the last four years, Democrats in the state assembly have blocked the bill from receiving a vote on the floor, where Republican supports believe the bill has enough support to pass.
UFC CEO Lorenzo Fertita said on the bill's passing and the issue with needing the state assembly's support: "We once again thank the State Senate – Democrats and Republicans – for giving overwhelming approval to legislation to legalize and regulate MMA in New York State, the last place in North America where professional MMA remains illegal. The attention turns yet again to the assembly. Hopefully the assembly will finally recognize that enacting this law is the right thing for the millions of fans, the right thing for ensuring the safety of amateur and professional MMA athletes, the right thing for tourism and economic development, the right thing for the arenas and the union jobs they provide. I have no choice but to be cautiously optimistic. Mr. [Silver], make 2014 the year this gets done."
MMA is currently legal and regulated in 49 US states. New York remains the only holdout.