• Sports betting efforts in Louisiana were shot down last week.
  • Attempting to include sports betting language into a fantasy bill, HB 459 was rejected on Tuesday.
  • Louisiana legislators have until Thursday to approve any measure that legalizes daily fantasy sports.

BATON ROUGE, La. – Though the countdown has begun to the end of the session, Louisiana legislators may be able to finalize a fantasy sports betting measure.

On Tuesday, the House rejected HB 459, after undergoing Senate amendments which attempted to sneak in a few lines about actual sports betting. This seemed like the last straw for the lawmakers, but another bill is on the horizon.

Scheduled to be voted on by the House on Wednesday, HB 600 also underwent Senate amendments but stayed in line with the original bill’s text. These were based on a few modifications, not the addition of an entirely separate industry.

HB 600 would levy a state tax on fantasy sports contests and allow for the Louisiana Gaming Control Board to issues licenses to operators like DraftKings and FanDuel.

When the measure was sent to the Senate, the House agreed on a 10% tax on the net gaming proceeds as well as a $10,000 annual fee paid from the operator. The Senate modified this to increase the state’s profits by 50%, making the tax rate 15% of net gaming proceeds and setting the annual licensing fee to $15,000.

With these additional funds, it will allocate two-thirds of the total tax to the Louisiana Early Childhood Fund, an account created to provide essential programs and supplies for poverty-stricken youths. The remaining third will be proportionately sent to the parishes where the fantasy sports contests were entered from.

The final amendment included the allowance of the legislators to appropriate money to the Department of Justice and Department of Public Safety for expenses related to the new industry.

A total of 47 (of 64) parishes voted to approve and legalize paid fantasy sports contests in last November’s election. There is no doubt that the majority of Louisiana residents want this measure to happen, but time is running out for the lawmakers.

If the House does not approve the proposal, it will look like Louisiana will go another year without legal sports betting or daily fantasy sports. The legislators have until Thursday night until all hopes for this year are done.

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