Don't celebrate just yet, but the first hurdle has just been cleared for the MMA bill in the New York State Assembly. The Committee on Tourism, Arts and Sports Development just voted 17-3 in favor of sanctioning MMA. Now it must pass through the Ways & Means Committee and the Codes Committee, then hit the floor for a vote. Sambo Steve sent around a press release, and here's a chunk of it: "This, along with the Senate's passage of the companion bill, is a clear mandate that New York wants MMA. Next up is the Ways & Means committee, chaired by Assemblyman Farrell. Farrell has a history of opposition to MMA in New York. Everyone contact Farrell and urge him to follow this mandate, and put the legislation on the Ways & Means calendar!"