Saturday, May 18, 2013

Battle for NY MMA Heats Up as Legislative Calendar Nears End

It has been a busy couple of weeks in the world of NY MMA. Both sides have been ramping up their attacks.

The UFC and several members of the local MMA community hit the road this week for press conferences across the state (Syracuse, Buffalo and Rochester). Assembly Democrats (majority) will reportedly discuss the bill to regulate professional MMA during their closed door caucus within the next few weeks.

Here are some comments in favor of NY MMA from Assemblyman Al Stirpe at the OnCenter/War Memorial press conference on Wednesday May 15, 2013:

Read up on the presser tour in these and ABC News reports.

Other recent stories on the NY MMA battle include:
-The Economist:  No Holds, Barred
-Unions, Lies, and MMA in New York by Peter Lampasona of MMA Frenzy
-An open letter from Zuffa/MMA4NY requesting a place at the table at Governor Cuomo's Tourism Summit
-Dana White: I'm Not Doing Anything in NY Until They Do The Right Thing by Mike Stets of Bleacher Report

The opposition has been far from silent despite majority support for professional MMA regulation from legislators in Albany and New Yorkers across the state. According to Siena's latest poll a majority of New Yorker's favor lifting the ban on professional MMA.

Senator Brad Hoylman continued his push to set up a fighter's health fund in NY with this Daily News editorial. Check out my previous comments regarding his proposed legislation. Similarly, Assemblywoman Ellen Jaffee and Senetor Liz Krueger have proposed legislation calling for a two year moratorium on NY MMA until health risks can be further assessed.

Comments by Assemblywoman Margaret Markey, Chair of the Assembly Committee on Tourism, Parks, Arts and Sports Development (the first hurdle in the committee process for the Assembly MMA legislation) are not promising as she appears not ready to approve the legislation.

As in years past, the NY Catholic Conference threw their oppositional hat into the ring this month.

With the legislative calendar ending in June, we still have a long way to go.

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