I am gonna call this the Hustler notion
. Could have called it the Bicycle notion, or the Commerce notion, or the Hollywood Park notion, etc etc.
The state should IMHO, allow all existing California casinos
to provide, online, all the games the casino currently offers to live players. There should be a limit as to how far away (zip code based perhaps) a new players account address can be. The notion here is that the casino that benefits is actually close enough to drive in less than a set period of time (hour, 1/2 day/day). So for instance I, in So.Cal, could not sign up at Harrah's Tahoe and play regularly. I could, as part of a vacation, play the Harrahs Tahoe, from a Tahoe local ISP (hotel, motel, rented property...)
This notion goes further by allowing the casino to associate with world-wide poker networks. In this case the Hustler (or Bicycle, or Hawaiian Gardens...) could decide to allow Stars to provide the software, and player pool for its online players.
The BIG difference would be that each new online account would have to be opened by a LIVE PLAYER IN THE CASINO! You would have to go there to open your account. Proof would be determined at that time that you are who you say you are, and live where you say you live. This should prevent underage players. This will bring a ton of live bodies into the Casinos. They will love this even if these bodies are there only to deposit. Most will drop a dime or 2 while in the lines to register.
Cash-outs would work the same. No checks in the mail, no e-xfers. You would have to show up at the same casino you signed up at to collect.
In a case like So.Cal, where I have maybe 5-10 Card Rooms/Casinos within 2 hours drive, I could sign up at multiple Casinos.
The Casinos would pay a bear min registration/regulation fee to the state, but would treat each online player as if he were playing live in casino. Same Income Tax structure, and some bookkeeping ability to provide each player with a year to year account to offset loses vs winnings.
The state would provide the mechanism to verify fairness, provide recourse, and regulate that both sides are represented factually, fairly and honestly in as transparent a manner as possible.
Truth here is that software would provide most of the grunt work, and there would be no necessary army of Online Poker Room Regulators. The fees could be minimal, and the State benefits by increasing the income taxes recovered from players, as well as the taxes on the Casino itself.
Keys things here IMHO are;
-Live registration and cash-outs,
-World Wide player Pool,
-State Income Taxes and Bis taxes increased.