Washington State looks to progress sports betting legislation


The first bill HB2478 (companion bill S6277) was introduced by Representative Brandon Vick late last week and would authorize sports betting at tribal casinos, card rooms and racetracks.

Under the proposed bill, an operator may accept bets on sports events from players over the age of 18 that are physically present in a retail sports betting lounge, or via self-service betting machines or an online sports pool.

Each tribal casino and sports betting licensee may provide no more than one branded sports betting website, which may have an accompanying mobile application bearing the same brand for an online sports pool.

A sports pool must be operated in a retail sports betting lounge located at the tribal casino, card room, or racetrack complex, while operators can only launch online once a retail betting lounge has commenced operation.

Licensed operators may provide promotional credits, incentives, bonuses, complimentaries, or similar benefits designed to induce sports betters to wager. The server or other equipment used by licensees to accept wagers at a sports pool or online sports pool must be located in that tribal casino, card room, or racetrack complex.

The Washington state gambling commission will have the authority to charge a card room and a racetrack a fee for the issuance of a sports wagering license in an amount of $500,000 for the initial issuance and “a reasonable fee” in the case of a renewal.

Every tribal casino and sports betting licensee will pay a tax of 10 per cent of net gaming revenue to the state.

A second bill HB2683 (companion bill SB6394) would authorize sports betting on a very limited basis by restricting it to tribal casinos in the state.

Upon the request of a federally recognized Indian tribe in the state, the tribe’s class III gaming compact must be amended pursuant to the Indian gaming regulatory act.

This will authorize the tribe to conduct and operate sports wagering on federal Indian lands, provided the amendment addresses how sports wagering will be conducted, operated, and regulated.

Both bills, HB2478 and HB2683, have been read for the first time and referred to the Committee on Commerce & Gaming for further approval.

Gaming Intelligence

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