Californian tribes have gained some ground on the road to legalizing sports betting as they obtained an extension for getting the issue on the voting ballot in 2022. The Superior Court decided in favor of the Californian tribes, allowing their leaders a 90-day extension to muster enough support that would push the sports betting proposal to appear on the 2022 ballot.
Still A Long Way to Go
Though the ruling has caused something to cheer about, it’s far from a victory for the tribal leaders. Still, a huge ground to cover as the tribes now has just 90 days to get required signatures sufficient enough to ensure a referendum on the 2020 ballot.
California law dictates that at least 1,096,853 signatures are required to make the referendum worth-considering. However, the tribal leaders aren’t too far from the target, as they’re currently sitting at 971,373 signatures, according to the last week’s figures.
Tribal leaders have been positioning that their target of enough signatures was hampered by the pandemic-led lockdowns.
So, they pleaded for the extra time and to be precisely sought a 180-day extension from the courts. Though the Superior Court granted half of what was requested, 90 days will definitely give them some precious time to get the extra signatures.
However, the tribal leaders don’t a spot on the 2020 ballot, as this would make the residents of California as kingmakers on in-person betting at the 70 tribal casinos inside of the state.
The stipulate plans put forward by the tribal leaders include the prohibition of private racetrack and cardrooms from being allowed to take sports wagers.
Besides, it would also bar mobile and online platforms from operating in the state.
Senator Removes Bill
This week could have seen Senate bill SCA 6 proposal to make the 2020 ballot. Senator Bill Dodd, who presented the bill, withdrew it at the last minute this week due to the position of the tribal leaders and the unfolding of the events.
The Senator who had anticipated the tribal opposition, deemed it prudent not to move forward the bill. The legislative move was being viewed as a crucial step to incorporating a lucrative industry into state regulation in times of economic crisis.
Why the Push for Legalized Sports Betting?
Many experts in California are striving to see legalized sports betting through the legislature as they see huge financial benefits for the state.
Some predict that the gambling industry could bring over $1.5 billion in revenues for California, which would equate to $200 million in state taxes.
It’s a considerable amount for any state, and the pandemic-led economic crisis further magnifies the value of this amount.
However, no matter how much financial potential it may have, Californians are unlikely to place legal sports wagers before 2023.