June 3, 2009 – Bill A02009, known to MMA fans as the critical piece of legislation that would move Mixed Martial Arts toward legalization in New York, was put to the floor this morning. The New York State Assembly’s Tourism, Arts, and Sports Development Committee passed Bill A02009 with a 14-6 vote, paving the way for further steps towards allowing state-sanctioned MMA events in New York. The bill has now been referred to the Codes Committee of the NY Assembly for another vote.
While MMA in New York has not quite made it to legal status yet, the bill did survive strong, however illogical, opposition by Assemblyman Bob Reilly, who has garnered much attention from the MMA community for his disdain for UFC President Dana White and the sport at large. Despite his 20-minute speech against MMA sanctioning, the bill passed by a large margin. Time will tell when efforts to legalize Mixed Martial Arts in New York State will come to a final fruition.