Ill. lawmaker proposes daily fantasy sports wagering

Ill. lawmaker proposes daily fantasy sports wagering

October 29, 2015 9:54 AM
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An Illinois legislator filed a proposal Tuesday that would allow daily fantasy sports betting sites to operate within the state.

Websites such as DraftKings would not be considered gambling in Illinois, but any companies offering daily fantasy sports betting would need policies that allow for audits. They would also need to bar employees from competing.

The legislation offered by Rep. Mike Zalewski would also prohibit players under 18 from participating and would allow sites to check players for any outstanding tax liens or child support. Zalewski said he will push his plan toward center state after the current budget stalemate ends.

Nevada casino regulators have ruled that daily fantasy sports betting is unregulated gambling and companies offering it in Nevada must first qualify for a sports book license.  

Few companies are likely to go to the trouble of obtaining a Nevada license because the state’s roughly three million residents do not offer much of a market. This is the same reason companies offering online poker have mostly ignored the Nevada market.

Other states with much larger populations – such as Illinois – offer opportunities that might make it worthwhile for companies to get busy in their legislatures.

Illinois Gaming Board spokesman Gene O’Shea told the Associated Press that he is not commenting on the legislation but that the Board is seeking a legal opinion from the Attorney General’s Office.

Phil Hevener has been writing about the Nevada gaming business for more than 30 years. Email: PhilHevener@GamingToday.com.

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