The State Assembly will likely take up legalizing mixed martial arts in 2016, according to Speaker Carl Heastie.
In the past, the bill was kept from the floor by former Speaker Sheldon Silver. Heastie says he was a personal supporter of MMA before he became speaker.
"I took myself off of sponsorship because I didn't want my personal views to influence the conference," Heastie told WBFO. "But I do think there is significant support in the conference for MMA. We'll see what happens next session."
Heastie says MMA is legal in 49 other states. He says the state is losing out on the economic benefit of hosting the matches.
The Assembly Speaker wrapped up a three-day tour of the Buffalo area on Friday.