A bill to allow online sports betting in Georgia won overwhelming support this week in…
Posted on: March 6, 2021, 04:57h.
Final up to date on: March 6, 2021, 05:32h.
Larry Henry Learn Extra
The George Senate has permitted two measures that might pave the way in which for cell sports activities betting within the state. The laws now goes to the Home for consideration subsequent week.
State Sen. Jeff Mullis gestures whereas addressing a legislative subject. The senator from North Georgia has launched laws to permit sports activities betting within the state. (Picture: Atlanta Journal-Structure)
One of many measures permitted within the Senate on Friday, Senate Decision 135, would begin the method for a state constitutional modification permitting sports activities betting. An modification requires a two-thirds vote within the Home and Senate and public approval in a statewide election. The decision handed within the Senate on a 41-10 vote. The Senate has 56 members.
The opposite measure that handed within the Senate Friday, Senate Invoice 142, would set up sports activities betting regulation and oversight. The invoice was permitted on a 34-17 vote, in line with the Atlanta Journal-Structure.
Sen. Jeff Mullis (R) is the lead sponsor of each measures.
“The constitutional modification is solely permitting the very individuals that you just symbolize — those that vote for, or possibly don’t vote for you — you’re permitting them to resolve no or sure on sports activities betting,” he mentioned.
If cell sports activities betting is permitted, corporations offering the service would pay an annual license charge of $100,000. Additionally they would pay a $10,000 utility charge, the Journal-Structure reported.
Atlanta Professional Groups Supply Help
Beneath Sen. Mullis’ proposal, six corporations can be allowed to supply cell sports activities betting. Every would pay a 16 p.c earnings tax, with tax income going to needs-based scholarships, rural broadband, and rural well being care, in line with the newspaper.
The invoice would enable bettors to put wagers on skilled and faculty sporting occasions, however not on faculty video games involving George universities.
Every little thing else from skilled ping-pong to frog leaping – supplied it’s skilled – can profit from this,” Mullis mentioned.
4 skilled sports activities franchises have come out in help of sports activities betting within the state. The franchises are the Atlanta Falcons, Atlanta Braves, Atlanta Hawks, and Atlanta United. They’ve shaped a coalition referred to as the Georgia Skilled Sports activities Integrity Alliance.
‘Simply the Starting’
Mullis acknowledged that passage within the Senate doesn’t sign that sports activities betting is assured to occur. Sports activities betting nonetheless should be permitted within the Home.
“I do know this course of is simply starting,” he mentioned. “It’s going to maneuver down the street, and there are going to be many modifications.”
The state Home additionally has taken up a cell sports activities betting measure, Home Invoice 86. This invoice, by Rep. Ron Stephens (R), wouldn’t require a constitutional modification. The invoice would solely want a majority vote within the Home and Senate earlier than going to the governor for his consideration.
Whereas the state structure prohibits legalized playing, sports activities betting advocates have mentioned that kind of wagering can be a “lottery recreation” overseen by the Georgia Lottery Corp. The structure already has been amended to permit a lottery.
The Journal-Structure’s Georgia Legislative Navigator provides HB 86 solely a 22 p.c probability of passage.
Payments to permit business casinos and horse tracks additionally face issue in successful legislative approval, in line with printed accounts. Each would require a constitutional modification.
Sen. Invoice Cowsert (R), who has opposed playing, mentioned he helps sports activities betting payments.
”To many individuals, that’s leisure,” he mentioned. “And it’s nearly a part of our Southern tradition.”
Associated Information Articles