Illinois is 1 step away from sports gambling after a last-ditch campaign by Rep. Bob Rita dropped into place this weekend.
House lawmakers voted to approve a wide expansion of gaming within a funding financing bill on Saturday, and the Senate followed suit on Sunday. Gambling provisions within the act include a long-awaited casino in Chicago and authorization for both retail and online sports gambling.
The bill goes to the desk of Gov. J.B. Pritzker, whose recent comments make it clear he will sign it into law. The governor helped shepherd IL sports gambling across the end line, wanting to drive more than $200 million in additional earnings to his nation.
Passage was, frankly, a remarkable feat considering the absence of advancement through the first five weeks of the year. Previous hints from Rep. Mike Zalewski were all turned aside, and also a perceived conflict of interest forced him to step back at the final days of session.
LSR continues to be keeping a close watch on the chatter this weekend and updating this webpage as the situation unfolded. Here’s the play-by-play:
Is Sunday the afternoon for Illinois sports gambling?
The Senate finally takes the ground after 4 p.m. local time. It does not take long.
Sen. Terry Link presents the terms of the amended bill, which carries a total projected financial effect of $12 billion. Commendations and favorable comments from Sen. Dave Syverson, the Senate Minority Leader, seem to indicate that passing is a certainty.
Comments are brief and largely surface-level, using a few lawmakers lugging around in narrow provisions which affect their components. Sen. John Curran is the only person who talks to sports gambling at any given length, seeking clarification about the branding provisions for online platforms.
Link is psychological as he closes the proceedings, representing on his 20-year effort to increase economic growth from manufacturing.
The room applauds as the board lights up green, and the Senate concurs with the House changes with a 46-10 vote. Just like that, the bill that will legalize sports gambling in Illinois is led to the Senate.
IL sports gambling bill as amended
Here is the Complete text of this language:
What is in the change?
The new vertical financing bill includes a multi-level gaming package headlined by a mega-casino at Chicago. The measure also has six categories of licensure for IL sports betting:
Master sports wagering
Management services provider Tier 2 official league data supplier Central system supplier In stark terms, these categories allow casinos, race tracks, and sports venues to offer sports betting — equally in-person and on the internet. The terms that concern online gambling, however, require in-person enrollment for the initial 18 months.
The amendment also authorizes a lottery implementation encompassing 2,500 locations in the very first year.
IL sports gambling details
The commission for a master sports betting license is calculated based on gross gaming revenue from the last calendar year. Casinos will cover 5% of the number to provide sports gambling for four yearsup to a maximum of $10 million. That cap was not current in recent models and should ease the load on large operators like Rush Street Gaming. Rita also softened the proposed tax rate down to 15 percent of revenue.
As you can infer from the categories, language mandating the use of official league data for props and in-play gambling stuck. While there is absolutely no integrity fee, the bill will not empower colleges and sports leagues to restrict the types of accessible wagers. As composed, weatherproof collegiate sports are off the board in Illinois.
The amendment removes the total blackout period for internet betting that snuck to a previous version, but it will keep a modified penalty box for DraftKings and FanDuel. Daily fantasy sports companies will be permitted to compete at the sports gambling arena, but only master licensees can offer online wagering for the first 18 months.
The change also generates three online-only permits costing $20 million apiece, awarded on a delay by means of a competitive process.
Saturday: Agreement reached for IL sports betting Around three hours into the weekend semester, we are still in a holding pattern. House lawmakers have ticked several more things off their to-do list today, including a bill that increases the minimum salary for Illinois teachers. For now, though, there’s nothing new to report online sports gambling.
Apart from the things we’re already touched , a few other hurdles have cropped up.
Perhaps most importantly, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot publicly opposes the bill as written. Her principal concern is the provision permitting sportsbooks inside of stadiums and arenas.
Mayoral resistance leads to’understanding’
Here is the announcement from Mayor Lightfoot, as reported by Capitol Fax:
“I strongly support a gambling bill that directs a brand new casino and dollars to the town of Chicago. However, I oppose the inclusion of a provision that could open sports wagering in venues like Soldier Field. This type of proposal has the potential to undermine the viability of any Chicago-based casino through the diversion of customers and revenue from a casino. Because the impact of sports wagering in stadiums hasn’t been completely vetted or analyzed, I cannot support the bill in its present form and advocate the deletion of this stadium-betting provision”
On Saturday, however, the government releases a follow-up statement indicating that the conversation is moving forward:
“I have spoken to Mayor Lightfoot about her issues with regards to sports gambling, and we’ve reluctantly worked together with the bill sponsors to make clear that the legislative intent will reveal that there are limits on both the amount of and locations for sports betting venues. I am happy that we’ve reached this understanding…”
Mayor Lightfoot subsequently drops her opposition via a different announcement:
“After productive talks with the Governor, we’ve agreed to allow a limited quantity of gambling at sports venues subject to local control and oversight. These enhancements to the gaming proposal will allow us to maximize revenue capabilities of a brand new casino to the Town of Chicago and ensure a good quality of life for our areas that might otherwise be affected. As such, I recommend the passage of SB 690 as amended…”
Illinois House votes on sports gambling After a break for committee meetings and caucuses, Rep Bob Rita documents a last amendment to the funding package. The sports gambling language looks mostly unchanged at a glimpse, although there are a great deal of words to get through. The bill is known as second reading about 6 p.m. local time and moved straight to third.
By there, it’s apparent that House lawmakers have reached an agreement to pass a number of large bills — including this one — before the end of the evening. The ground demonstration becomes something of a victory lap for Rita, with several members commending him for his wide efforts to shore up vertical infrastructure. In his closing, Rita thanks Rep. Mike Zalewski because of his job.
The House votes 87-27 in favor of passing, sending the bill back into the room of origin for concurrence. The Senate matches Sunday at 3 p.m.
Friday: Last gasp for IL sports gambling prospects
Friday was frantic in the state capitol, using an assortment of key issues to hammer on the last day of the scheduled session. Lawmakers did make a dent in the pile of bills, but leaders were made to issue a bad-news bulletin stretching the work week through Sunday.
Although sports gambling remains unresolved, a significant effort has surfaced.
Rep. Robert Rita grabbed the reins on Friday, borrowing from the frame of Rep. Mike Zalewski to cobble together a compromise bill. His campaign ran out of daylight on the House floor, however, the bonus weekend of lawmaking means there is still hope for sports gambling this year.
Even though there’s a momentum, failure to cast a vote on Friday makes the job just a little bit taller. Any invoices considered from here out there demand a 3/5ths supermajority to passa brink that may just be out of reach.
Here’s a chronological timeline of this day’s events:
A new vehicle for IL sports gambling Lawmakers start the day behind closed doors, working to finalize the frame for IL sports betting. Most presume S 516 will serve as the car, a Chicago casino bill that appears to be an appropriate target for the empowering language. A midday curveball, however, shifts the attention.
Joe Ostrowski is a Chicago radio anchor who’s had his ear to the floor this week, and he’s the first to show that everyone is looking in the incorrect place.
Some optimism in Springfield for sport betting.
SB 690 should drop very soon.
7:22 PM – May 31, 2019
Twitter Ads info and privacy Watch Joe Ostrowski’s additional Tweets
The bill he references (S 690) is not a gaming bill, but a step amending tax provisions in the Invest in Kids Act. The current version has cleared the Senate and awaits a floor vote in the lower chamber. Unexpectedly, some expect House lawmakers to file a new amendment related to sports betting.
Sure enough, a placeholder pops upon the docket, with a hearing in the House Executive committee scheduled for 1:30 p.m. local time. A change of sponsor to Sen. Terry Link provides another indication that something is going to happen.
LSR sources indicate that there is excellent reason to monitor the dialogue all the way up before the last gavel.
Senate Appropriations committee hearing
Sen. Link presents the amended bill to the committee, and… boy, is there a lot in it.
In addition to the gambling provisions, it also touches on taxes for cigarettes, parking, video lottery terminals, and numerous different mechanisms to boost state revenue. The overall fiscal impact is close to $1 billion, together with sports betting representing only a tiny component of the bundle.
It’s the quickest of hearings, over in less than five minutes. One member asks whether the bill raises the amount of slot machines for each casino licensee — it does — and that’s about it.
House Executive committee hearing
A heated floor debate on a marijuana bill (which ultimately passed) delays the House hearing by many hours.
After the committee eventually convenes, Rep. Mike Zalewski is a surprise addition to the dais in the front of the room. Although the long-suffering proponent of IL sports gambling recently stepped back in the spotlight, Rita’s bill still lists him as the first House sponsor. The committee substitutes Zalewski in as a temporary member to cast a vote in favour of passage.
Without much lead time, the change attracts 34 proponents and nine opponents (which grows to 18). Casino groups including Boyd Gaming, Penn National Gaming, and also the Illinois Casino Association remain opposed to the final language.
Members of this committee have plenty of questions, but the bulk of the conversation centers around gambling terms not related to sports gambling. Rita struggles to describe some of the finer points in detail, especially as they relate to DraftKings and FanDuel. It’s complicated.
The language allows online platforms, but online-only companies can not seek licensure for the first 18 months of IL sports gambling. The host indicates he constructed his bill that way to”provide Illinois companies a ramp” to the new sector. Rita also notes that his amendment won’t affect the existing status quo for DFS.
The committee recommends adoption of this change with an 8-5 vote, advancing the bill to the floor. There is still a great deal of work left to do before adjournment, equally on sports betting and on a number of critical issues — such as the state funding.
Formerly, in Illinois sports gambling…
This year’s attempt to legalize sports betting follows in the footsteps of this unsuccessful 2018 effort.
As it did last year, work started early in 2019. Lawmakers cobbled together a variety of possible frameworks, each catering to a specific set of stakeholders. Yet more, though, nothing broadly palatable had emerged as the past couple of hours of session ticked off the clock.
The proposed budget from Gov. J.B. Pritzker includes $217 million in revenue from sports gambling, so there is more at stake than just the liberty to bet. Failure would induce Illinois to observe from the sidelines while its neighbors in Indiana and Iowa activate their new laws.
Who will participate?
The notion of this”penalty box” is your biggest barrier to some passing at the moment.
To make a long story short, some casino groups are working to keep DraftKings Sportsbook and FanDuel Sportsbook from the Illinois market. They argue that daily fantasy sports is not explicitly lawful in the country, and these so-called bad actors ought to be deducted from licensure for three decades. The actual motivation is, of course, a desire to eliminate competition in the two companies working away with the New Jersey sports betting market.
DraftKings responded by temporarily running a television campaign pushing back on the obstruction from Rush Street Gambling.
How much will it cost?
The sport leagues also have gained more leverage with Illinois lawmakers than they have elsewhere in the nation.
Most previous proposals for IL sports gambling required payment of a ethics fee and the use of official league data to settle”Tier 2″ wagers. No US sports betting legislation comprises a ethics fee, and Tennessee is the only one with an info mandate.
Coupled with licensing fees payable out at $25 million and taxes amounting to 20% of revenue, these operational burdens can stand between the invoice and the end line.
Who is in charge?
Rep. Mike Zalewski carried the baton all spring, but a lack of advancement and a perceived conflict of interest forced him to step aside in the 11th hour.
Start-of-day intel indicates that Rep. Bob Rita is actively working to stuff the enabling language in the broader gaming package before lawmakers head home for the year. In what could be regarded as an encouraging sign, Senate Republican Leader Sen. Dave Syverson has signed on as a co-sponsor.
There is no warranty that bill moves, though, and perhaps it doesn’t contain sports betting provisions even when it does.
Matt Kredell contributed to the story.
Read more: sport24ore.com