In the state of California, eighteen of the state’s tribes that operate casinos are planning on launching a massive campaign that could potentially see this western state becoming one of the latest to fully legalize sports betting activities within its borders. As suggested, this campaign will aim at seeking voters to decide on whether to legalize sports betting activities or not.
It should be noted that the state of California has already attempted to take steps towards legalizing online sports betting and online gambling several times before the campaign. At the moment, it is fully legal to wager on daily fantasy sports in California, but this is only due to the fact that daily fantasy sports are not classified as online wagering.
Golden State’s Sports Betting Industry
Despite some recent progress in this matter, the previous attempts to legalize online gambling in the state has far away from becoming the reality. Considering the state’s difficult politics, it is yet unclear when legalized online gaming will become a reality for the state’s residents. One move which made this possible came last May when the United States Supreme Court decided to overturn one of the federal bans on sports betting.
This landmark decision gave every state the opportunity to make its moves regarding this matter. Eastern states including Delaware, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey immediately jumped at this great opportunity while some other states followed, but not California. Today, the majority of the states are readily jumping on the bandwagon considering massive gaming revenues that are generated by such activities.
One of the major issues that the state of California is facing regarding this matter is the great resistance of the tribal casino venues. The truth is that there is a battle between the state’s Indian Gaming Association and independently working card rooms. This naturally poses a great issue for the state’s voters who eventually decide on the future of the state’s gambling market.
The Latest Initiative Led by Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians
The latest initiative which could see the state becoming one of the states with legalized sports betting activities came from one of the federally-recognized tribal organizations Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians. The tribe alongside seventeen other federally-recognized tribes hopes to get a legalization question included in the following year’s ballot.
One of the efforts made includes the tribal attorney filling some paperwork with the state’s Attorney General Office which seeks official permission to start collecting signatures from the registered voters which are required in order to get the initiative added to the following ballot. Commenting on the news, the Pechanga Band of Luiseno Indians’ Chairman Mark Macarro said that this ballot question would primarily focus on asking the state’s voters to approve a California constitutional amendment to allow licensed racetracks and tribal casinos to provide real-money wagering on an assortment of collegiate and professional sports.
In the case of this sports betting initiative being passed, tribal casinos and licensed racetracks will be able to take real-money wagers on various kinds of sports activities excluding high school sports activities. He also added that these venues will also pay the state 10% taxes on their generated gross gaming revenues. As reported, this initiative was supported by several other state’s tribes including the Morongo Band of Mission Indians, the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians and the Barona Band of Mission Indians among others.