After failing in the previous legislative session, advocates of the sports betting operation in Minnesota may have finally gained momentum. Under the terms set out by the Democratic Party proposal, the tribal casinos in Gopher State would acquire exclusive rights to 11 licenses in the state.
What’s in the Writing of the Bill?
According to the exclusive rights in the bill, the tribal nations would be allowed to offer both online and brick-and-mortar sports wagering in Minnesota. Once again, Rep. Zach Stephenson led the charge by introducing a measure in the state House chamber.
Due to the results of the Midterm elections, things could take a turn for the better as the Democratic Party controls both legislative chambers in the state. In addition, the bill has support from a newly formed alliance between the state’s tribal nations and its six professional sports franchises.
Minnesota’s neighboring states offer sports betting to its residents in their respective states. To the north of the border, Ontario is one of the newest territories to join the sports betting industry, and many US-based companies accept wagers in the province.
On top of that, lawmakers want to steer prospective bettors away from offshore sportsbooks that don’t abide by laws set in the nation. The revenue generated from offshore bookmakers doesn’t go toward the state.
Tribal Nations and Professional Franchises Join Sides
The Minnesota Indian Gaming Association (MIGA) has provided extra confirmation that the coalition, including the Loons, Timberwolves/Lynx, Twins, Wild, and Vikings, will support the legislation in an open letter to Rep. Stephenson. According to the bill, mobile sports gambling will be subject to a 10 percent tax rate.
As a part of the bill, exclusive funding will go towards gaming regulation, consumer protection, and programs that mainly target problem gaming and youth sports. Many states, including Minnesota, have taken the initiative to combat problem gambling.
Additionally, wagers placed at retail tribal casinos would be tax-exempt. In the same manner as the previous year’s measure, Canterbury Park and Running Aces horse racing tracks in Minnesota and any other prospective state entrant are not eligible to apply for sports betting licenses.
Rep. Stephenson believes giving the tribes exclusive rights is the best alternative because they are best suited to extend partnerships with the sportsbook operators. In addition, taking this course of action would gain more support from members of the House chamber.
When is the Vote Expected to Happen?
It is expected that Stephenson’s proposed legislation will have to pass several House and Senate committees before coming up for a floor vote. Most of the progress made in the legislative session will rest on Rep. Stephenson and Sen. Matt Klein. Both of these representatives hold high positions in their regard.
Rep. Stephenson leads the charge, while Sen. Klein is the bill’s co-sponsor.