- HB 459 will be returning to the house for another examination
- SB 153 has failed to help Louisiana establish a sports betting framework
- HB 600 to be examined on Tuesday
A house bill looking to legalize daily fantasy sports (DFS) in Louisiana was revamped by Senate and sent back for more voting.
House Bill 459 Makes It Back to House
Louisiana’s legal sports betting to-and-fro continues. After successfully applying a hitch-hiker amendment to House Bill 459 seeking to regulate daily fantasy sports betting, senators de facto introduced a regular sports betting proviso that now has to go once again through the lower house before it can be voted on the Senate floor again.
The bill’s sponsor, Rep Kirk Talbot, has warned the Senate not to introduce regular sports betting options or he would shelve the draft. According to Rep Talbot, attaching regular sports betting would significantly dim the bill’s chances of passage.
Meanwhile, he is only looking to use the draft bill to introduce regulatory and tax framework for fantasy sports betting contests, which are popular in the U.S. Mr. Talbot project is significant as it also plans to introduce mobile betting options. Now, though, it has been weighed down by language from another bill.
The Little Tweaks That Throw a Spanner in the Words
Examining HB 459, senators decided to attach language from Senate Bill 153, a stand-alone sports betting bill that targets regular sporting contests. The bill didn’t make it through the House, much to the disappointment of the state’s 20 casinos.
Sen. Danny Martiny, author of SB 153, is a man with a plan. By passing back the bill, the document will have to be debated by a conference committee with three lawmakers from the house and senate who will rule on the passage of the bill. Senate has already voted in favor of sports betting before, but the House has been dragging its feet.
The House also tinkered with SB 153 legislation. The House Appropriations Committee began adding amendments and allowing truck shops, bars, and other venues to offer sports betting. The decisions eventually forced casinos themselves to withdraw their support from what would have allowed unfair competition.
Legislative passage of sports betting bills – fantasy or otherwise – have been grossly confusing. For instance, Appropriations Committee Chairman Cameron Henry intentionally skipped meetings to block a vote on a bill. Without the Charman, a vote cannot take place.
The legal shenanigans may continue yet again. If Mr. Talbot delivers on his threat to shelve the bill, Louisiana’s sports betting landscape will be barren for yet another year.