Sports betting bills HB 2772 and SB1797 have been brought forward in a bid to legalise sports betting in Arizona
Arizona sports betting seems to be gathering momentum as joint proposals in the House and Senate have been brought forward in a bid to legalise AZ Sports betting within Arizona.
Bills HB-2772 and SB-1797 aim to help Gov. Doug Ducey renegotiate terms with Arizona's tribes.
The House committee voted in favor to advance the bill with a 9-1 outcome, however, this vote indicates that there may be some form of opposition.
Furthermore, Gov. Doug Ducey indicated that he also wants to push through the legalisation of daily fantasy sports and keno. With this, 20 proposed licences would be divided between Arizona’s professional sports organisations and tribal operators.
Several sport team representatives showed their support, consisting of the Arizona Diamondbacks, PGA Tour and Phoenix Raceway, Arizona Cardinals and Phoenix Coyotes. This could pave the way to attaining licensees for sportsbooks at their venues and online, partnering with operators.
The Diamondbacks Vice President of Government Affairs, Amilyn Pierce, suggested that the bill would keep the organisation on track whilst keeping up the pace with other teams, since the benefits include generating revenue from lucrative partnerships with sportsbook operators.
General Counsel Anni Foster, speaking to the committee on behalf of Gov. Ducey, said that the Bill showcases several years of work to extend the tribal gaming compacts and consist of 3 main goals:
- Modernize the compact,
- Maintaining the current culture of gaming of the state
- Increasing revenue to the state.
Additionally, legalisation will produce both primary and additional benefits of legalising sports betting.
Compass Strategies managing partner Kelsey Lundy spoke on behalf of DraftKings, BetMGM and FanDuel, highlighting that Arizona is one of six states currently without legal daily fantasy sports. It was also noted that more than 1 million Arizonans are betting upwards of $3 billion illegally.
Furthermore, the state could generate approximately $42 Million in taxes on an annual basis.
On the other hand, the sole vote that went against the legalising of AZ Sports betting within Arizona was from Rep. Pamela Powers Hannely as she has concerns regarding data privacy.
Should legalisation go ahead, Arizona will be joining a number of other states in the US who have looked to sports betting and daily fantasy sports as a new way to generate revenue.
At least seven US states are preparing to introduce sports and mobile betting. Although many were expecting new laws to take more time to become effective, the economic downturn caused by the pandemic pushed various states to push their timelines forward.
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