Colorado lawmakers introduce fantasy sports legislation

Legislation has been introduced in the US state of Colorado to license fantasy sports operators and regulate the activity through the Office of Fantasy Contests.

House Bill 1404, the Fantasy Contests Act, is sponsored by House Democratic leader Crisanta Duran and Republican Cole Wist, with a Senate counterpart sponsored by Senator John Cooke and Senate President pro Tempore Lucía Guzmán.

The bill seeks to ensure that all winning outcomes of fantasy sports contests reflect the relative knowledge and skill of participants, with results determined predominantly by accumulated statistical results based on athletes’ performances in professional sporting competitions. All university, college, high school and youth sporting events will be excluded from fantasy contests.

Any company wishing to offer their services to Colorado residents must be licensed by the Office of Fantasy Contests, with the bill effectively classing DFS as a form of gambling. All contests must be conducted in licensed gaming establishments, class B horse racing tracks and at licensed facilities in which pari-mutuel wagering occurs.

The bill also states that operators may not use any sort of device that replicates or qualifies as limited gaming, and must contract a third party to perform an independent audit of the business each year. Failure to comply with the new regulations will result in a fine of up to $1,000 per offence.

As with legislation put forward in other states, employees of fantasy sports operators and their families are prohibited from entering cash contests, and information that may influence the results of contests must be kept confidential.

Should the legislation be passed it would come into force from July 1st.


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