Louisiana State Senate Revives Dead Sports Betting Bill

Senators Revive Sports Betting Bill

After watching the House kill the hopes of sports betting fans in Louisiana, the state Senate has resurrected the bill in the hopes that a final measure can be passed.

Senators passed House Bill 459 detailing the state’s proposed legalization of fantasy sports adding a rider onto the measure that could bring sports betting to voters in October.

The sports betting rider included in HB 459 is from the failed bill that the House Appropriations Committee shot down last week.

The rider has already come under scrutiny from the author of HB 459, Rep. Kirk Talbot. The Republican has stated that adding the rider to the bill would end his support of the measure.

Rep. Talbot told members of the media he was fearful that adding the rider would equate to a poison pill for other House members, effectively killing the bill before a vote could be taken.

The House Bill is a result of 47 of 64 parishes in Louisiana voting to approve legal daily fantasy sports in the state.

The problem is that residents cannot play the games until the regulations and taxing elements are put into effect by the state’s legislators.

This final step is the purpose of House Bill 459, but senators upset that their sports betting bill was killed in the House last week, are attempting to breathe new life into legal wagering.

The rider attached to HB 459 is similar to the wording of the passed Senate bill that failed. The state’s 20 casinos would be able to book sports bets at their brick and mortar locations.

Could Senators Force the Sports Betting Bill to be Passed?

With the new rider, the bill will now go back to the House and enter into a committee.

The original author of the Senate’s sports betting bill, Danny Martiny, welcomed the attachment of the rider and sending the bill back to the House.

“I’m not asking you to do anything different than what you’ve done in the past,” Martiny said to fellow Senate members before the vote.

Senators voted 24-13 to approve the measure with the new rider attached.

The measure failed in the House Appropriations last week when opposing representatives loaded the bill with poison pill amendments that collapsed support for the legislation.

The amendments became so toxic that even the casino industry pulled their support of the new measure.

Since most casinos view sports betting as a low margin win for their companies, the betting establishments removed their support once the bill strangled all possible profits.

After the industry pulled their support, the House tabled the bill, effectively killing it in committee.

Once the bill failed, Martiny encouraged fellow representatives to reconsider the vote in an attempt to give the bill a second chance.

“Move the bill forward and see what the House is going to do, instead of bottling up the bill with parliamentary procedure,” Martiny argued.

A few members of the House and Senate will now reconsider the bill in a committee to see if a compromise can be reached that would send the measure back for approval from both houses.

If Martiny is successful and a bill is passed, then each parish in Louisiana will vote on approval in a vote this October.