The long, complicated struggle over sports gambling in the State of Washington has gotten a little more clear.
The Washington State Gambling Commission has reached a tentative deal that would allow the Tulalip Tribe to host and facilitate sports betting within their licensed casinos. Current law in the state allows tribe-owned casinos only to offer sports betting at their physical locations. Twice in less than two years, the state legislature has failed to pass bills that would make it legal for residents to bet on sports online.
The proposed arrangement with the Tulatip Tribe is the first sports betting contract agreement by Washington state officials. For more than a year, the Gambling Commission has been working to negotiate a contract that would satisfy critics and supporters of sports betting.
“We believe that this compact amendment is a thoughtful approach by the Tribe and State that ensures sports wagering will be conducted with the highest integrity while protecting the public,” Washington State Gambling Commission Chair Bud Sizemore said in a published release about the tentative agreement.
What Does This Mean For Sports Bettors In Washington?
If the agreement with the Tulatip Tribe goes into effect, Washington residents will be able to legally wager in person at a licensed tribal location on professional, collegiate, and international (Olympic) sports.
Since sports betting was legalized in Washington in 2020, bettors have been patiently waiting for licensing to begin. A lobbying effort that promotes economic growth through the revenues that are earned from sports betting and other gaming activities like the lottery, has supported licensed sports betting for years.