MMA bill sails through Conn. House


MMA was once despised, pushed from the airways, and frequently illegal. Now it is the world's fastest growing sport, and at least at the professional level, is legal and regulated nearly everywhere. The two exceptions are New York and Connecticut.

Current Connecticut statutes don’t permit MMA, according to a legal interpretation from Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, although training is allowed.

“Because the current boxing regulations prohibit the fighting techniques used in MMA, and there is no statutory authority for MMA, MMA events cannot take place in Connecticut without a legislative change,” explained Blumenthal in a Dec. 8, 2008, correspondence with State Boxing Commission Chairman James Krayeske, Jr.

But regulation in Connecticut appears to be moving along. Past attempts to regulate the sport have met with opposition from the Culinary Union, and the WWE.

HB-5277 passed the Connecticut House of Representatives by a 117-26 vote. It now moves on to the state senate, where if brought for a vote would then put the sport on the cusp of legalization in the state.

UFC CEO Lorenzo Fertitta is hoping the bill will find its way to the governor's desk if it's allowed to be put to a vote in the state senate.

"I want to thank the House members who supported this bill," Fertitta stated. "It's the right thing to do for the thousands of Connecticut MMA and UFC fans, for economic development in the state and for jobs. We will now turn our attention to the Senate and urge the leadership to permit the bill to be voted upon. We are confident that if Senators are allowed to vote on the bill, it will pass with strong bipartisan support."

The bill, sponsored by Rep. Charles Clemons and Sen. Andres Ayala, already enjoys bipartisan support with 34 co-sponsors.

"Legalizing MMA is the right thing to do," Clemons stated. "I am proud of my colleagues in the House for the strong support they gave the bill and I look forward to working with my Senate colleagues to turn this bill into a law in 2013. The bill had strong support in the Committee on Public Safety and Security, the Committee on Finance, Revenue and Bonding, and on the floor of the House. The majority of representatives – Democrats and Republicans – know that this is the right thing to do for Connecticut."

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tags: Legislation   regulation   Connecticut   


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Recent Comments »

cripplersc site profile image  

5/14/13 10:30 AM by cripplersc

Point is it will open more venues for MMA around the state. More venues= more opportunities to fight

Vulva Fabulous site profile image  

5/14/13 10:20 AM by Vulva Fabulous

I was wrong, 10k for special events (not hockey or basketball).It's the Webster Bank Arena

Vulva Fabulous site profile image  

5/14/13 10:13 AM by Vulva Fabulous

Maybe Bridgeport where the Islanders farm team play hockey. It could be for a free show because I think there's only seats for 20k AT THE MOST (probably less), but the place is beautiful.

ChrispyMe site profile image  

5/14/13 7:54 AM by ChrispyMe

Lol that place got bulldozed like 5 years ago.

cripplersc site profile image  

5/14/13 7:23 AM by cripplersc

New Haven Coliseum!

GarlicSauce site profile image  

5/14/13 4:10 AM by GarlicSauce

WWE trying to stop MMA? Fucking pricks.

ChrispyMe site profile image  

5/14/13 3:05 AM by ChrispyMe

Mohegan and Foxwoods are NOT regulated by the state. They have their own tribal athletic commission (native American grounds/casino). Bellator comes here so does NAGA. Plus where are they going to host fights in CT? That dump in Hartford that has not been revamped from the 70's called the XL center. Mohegan and Foxwoods or bust I say.

Vulva Fabulous site profile image  

5/8/13 6:46 PM by Vulva Fabulous

It's weird reading this being a lifelong CT resident and multiple time UFC ticket buyer in CT.I was 8 rows back, next to the ramp when Baroni absolutely destroyed Dave Menne.

Chromium site profile image  

5/8/13 5:48 PM by Chromium

If the Connecticut bill passes the Senate and gets signed into law, they will become the 47th state to regulate MMA, the 48th to sanction it, and they would be the 49th where MMA is legal. In the United States, MMA is legal, sanctioned, and regulated in Alabama , Arizona, Akansas, California, Colorado, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryand, Massachussetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Caronia, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. Montana sanctions MMA events and licenses MMA fighters (usually this requires just a doctor's physical for fighters 35 and under), but unlike boxing it does not regulate events. Alaska has no athletic commission but MMA is legal there and it has a surprisingly robust indy scene. I just counted and I seem to be missing a state where MMA would still be outlawed and illegal. Hmmm, I wonder which state I'm forgetting here?  

Nick Fury site profile image  

5/8/13 12:32 PM by Nick Fury

I'm down by Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun all the time for work, and they used to have quite a few events at Mohegan. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that they pass it soon, so I can check some shows out there. Great place for a card.