Missouri voters could vote on legal sports betting

A Missouri lawyer last week filed nine private initiative petitions that would legalize sports betting with the secretary of state’s office. The proposals all call on the Missouri Gaming Commission to regulate betting, limit betting to professional sports teams only, and direct tax revenues to educational and road projects.

Beyond that, there are key differences and in total the proposals are similar to some of the many sports betting bills that have been tabled at the General Assembly over the past four years.

Lawyer Alixandra Cossette, who filed the petitions, did not respond to an investigation by Sport grip Friday. Nowhere on the petitions does it say who the supporters are, but a coalition of professional Missouri sports teams – the NFL Chiefs, Major League Baseball Royals, NHL Blues and MLS St. Louis City Soccer Club – released a statement. confirming their interest which ran into the Saturday Saint-Louis post-expedition.

“Each of our organizations supports the legalization of sports betting in Missouri as a way to increase engagement with our fans and provide a fun and exciting new way to enjoy the sport and support our teams. We also believe that sports betting will generate a significant new source of tax revenue for Missouri, ”the teams said in a joint statement.

Missouri politicians can’t figure it out

Missouri lawmakers have disagreed for four years over how to legalize sports betting. Proposals range from allowing retail-only use, statewide mobile use, creating a revenue fund to support sports facilities, and allowing betting through lottery kiosks. But politics, whether to allow betting on varsity teams and differences in the tax rate prevented consensus.

Senator Denny Hoskins and Representative Dan Shaul have said they will try again in 2022 and plan to file bills next month.

“I feel there is frustration with the lack of movement on the bills,” Shaul said. Sport grip in August. “Casinos want sports betting, pro teams want sports betting. The VLTs (Video Lottery Terminal Industry) want their share. They are frustrated, so what is going on?

“Denny and I are going to file similar bills and see where the frustration takes us.” I’ve always been the type to see where the market takes and let the state have a safe and secure system. “

Hoskins is concerned about letting professional state teams drive the process.

“Obviously I’m for sports betting,” he told the Post-shipment Last week. “But I have concerns when we put something into the Missouri Constitution without proper verification.

“There are a lot of details about sports betting, including tax rates, administration fees and annual administrative fees. “

Official data at stake

The nine proposals backed by sports teams would ban betting on varsity teams, which stakeholders say opens up opportunities for the black market to continue to thrive or for punters to cross state borders to place bets. Two of the states that share wide borders with Missouri – Illinois and Iowa – already allow mobile betting and college betting statewide.

DraftKings in 2020 partnered up with Casino Queen in East St. Louis, Ill., Where businesses woo Missouri punters with special breakfasts and weekend football events to get them across the border. . Tennessee’s eastern neighbor launched statewide mobile betting on November 1, and betting is legal in Nebraska but not yet live.

The proposals run the gamut of tax rates, from 6.75% to 21%, and six of the nine have a formal provision on league data. Three of the petitions describe where betting could take place – on existing gambling ships, in entertainment districts and on the internet. Entertainment districts would be built around professional sports stadiums, and professional teams would monitor whether or not betting is allowed within the limits.

The arrangement could be similar to existing betting exclusion zones in Washington, DC, where betting in and around Capital One Arena is controlled by the NBA Wizards and NHL Capitals in partnership with Caesars Sportsbook.

Professional teams taking the lead are unusual

This is the first time that professional sports teams have taken the lead in a petition on the sports betting bulletins initiative. Lawmakers sent the issue of legal sports betting to voters in Maryland, Nebraska, Louisiana and South Dakota in 2020, and California tribes will do the same in 2022.

Business operators have teamed up in California and Florida and are in the process of qualifying 2022 poll initiatives that would expand those markets.

In Missouri, a proposed voting initiative requires the signatures of 8% of registered voters in six of Missouri’s eight congressional districts. According to Ballot, 171,592 verified signatures would be required to participate in the 2022 poll, and proposals must be submitted to the state by June 8, six months before polling day. An initiative must pass through the offices of the Secretary of State, Attorney General, and State Auditor before obtaining final approval for the broadcast.



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Joseph D. Whitman

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