A Nevada-based gambling company is pushing for sports betting to expand beyond tribal casinos in Washington state.
According to local media reports, Maverick Gaming is campaigning for the passage of SB 5212, a bill recently introduced by state lawmakers to approve sports betting in the card rooms and on the racetracks.
In March last year, Governor Jay Inslee signed ESHB 2638, which legalized sports betting, but only in tribal casinos. The state and the tribes are still working on the details of the deal so the market has not yet started.
The latest sports betting proposal, sponsored by Sen. Curtis King, a Republican, and Sen. Marko Liias, a Democrat, would tax sports betting income at 10% and levy $ 100,000 in royalties on racetracks and card rooms that have sports betting create .
Neither King nor Liias sponsored the original Sprots betting legislation, which was passed last year.
Maverick Gaming owns 19 card rooms in Washington and would be one of the biggest beneficiaries of the bill. It is ChairmanEric Persson told a local ABC Affiliate that his real estate alone would generate large amounts of tax revenue for the state.
“This is the best kind of tax, the consumption tax. It doesn’t tax the people who don’t want to participate, ”Persson said. “We estimate we can collect taxes of $ 50 million annually.”
SB 5212 is currently under review by the Senate’s Labor, Commerce and Tribal Affairs Committee. During a public hearing a few days ago, the Washington Indian Gaming Association argued that the expansion would pull money away from the poor indigenous communities that support the tribal casinos.
The Washington State Gambling Commission added that there were “technical” problems with the way the proposal was drafted.
Persson has shown a willingness to fight for expansion since the bill was passed last year. He threatened to take the fight to court after Rep. Strom Peterson introduced an emergency clause to keep the bill from requiring an electoral referendum to become law.