The ballot that would legalize sports betting in Colorado may confuse voters and prevent sports betting from happening.

  • Colorado sports betting will be on the November 5th ballot as Proposition DD for voters to either pass or disapprove.
  • If passed, sports betting in Colorado would be made legal through casinos in three CO towns as well as through statewide mobile sports betting apps.
  • The 10% taxes to be collected on the net proceeds of legal sports betting in CO would be put toward funding the Colorado Water Plan.

DENVER – In less than a week, Colorado voters will be deciding whether or not they want to bring legal sports betting to the Centennial State.

The issue is listed as Proposition DD on the November 5 ballot. Net proceeds from legal sports betting in CO would be taxed at 10% and tax revenue would be used to fund the Colorado Water Plan. The state estimates that 29 million dollars in taxes would be collected from legal sports wagering in CO.

Land-based Colorado sportsbooks would be subjected to casinos located in either Black Hawk, Central City, or Cripple Creek, CO. Statewide mobile sports wagering apps would also be made available by sports betting companies partnering with one or more casinos located in those towns.

This information comes from CO HB19-1327, the bill that was passed through the legislature that put this issue on the ballot.

However, Colorado voters may be stumped once they actually see Proposition DD in their voting booths. The measure being put on the ballot reads as such:

“Shall state taxes be increased by twenty-nine million dollars annually to fund state water projects and commitments and to pay for the regulation of sports betting through licensed casinos by authorizing a tax on sports betting of ten percent of the net sports betting proceeds, and to impose the tax on persons licensed to conduct sports betting operations?”

The question starts out by asking to raise taxes, does not clearly specify who will pay the taxes on sports betting, and does not identify where sports wagering will be conducted. Casino executives, such as David Farahi, the CEO of Monarch Casino-Spa in Black Hawk, are concerned about the language.

“The ballot language is a bit confusing,” said Farahi. “Almost every time Coloradans have been asked a question that starts with ‘shall taxes be raised’, they’ve said no and they don’t even read the rest of the ballot question… It really depends on if voters take the time to understand what DD is asking them.”

Casinos and stakeholders in the legal sports betting industry have already made moves anticipating that CO voters will approve the measure.

Full House Resorts, which owns a gaming venue in the state, partnered with Smarkets last month in order to power an online sportsbook in CO if given regulatory approval. They struck a similar deal with Wynn Resorts earlier this month as well.

Although, those partnerships will mean nothing if voters don’t pass Proposition DD next week.

“I’m hopeful the Colorado voter takes the time to do the research and they come to the conclusion they should pass this,” said House Majority Leader Alec Garnett.

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