• Sen. Mark Hass has amended HB 3389 to bar mobile sports betting in the state.
  • HB 3389 is a lottery privacy measure otherwise unrelated to sports wagering.
  • The bill is not expected to pass.

SALEM, Ore. – Sports betting is already technically legal in Oregon, as it hasn’t had to be legislatively authorized. This is due to the pastime’s partial exemption of the now-overturned federal ban (PASPA).

As a result, Oregon can simply expand its lottery services to offer single-game legal sports betting statewide. And that’s exactly what the state has done in partnering with SBTech.

However, there are opponents of this initiative in the Oregon legislature.

One such opponent is Sen. Mark Hass (D-14), chairman of the Senate Finance Committee. Hass has proposed legislation to kill lottery-based mobile sports betting outright.

To do so, Hass has inserted a “poison pill” into HB 3389. HB 3389 is a privacy bill that would allow winners of certain Oregon Lottery games to remain anonymous.

Hass’ amendment adds the following language to the otherwise unrelated proposal:

“SECTION 4. (1) The Oregon State Lottery Commission may not offer a sports betting game unless tickets or shares for the game may be purchased solely via equipment:
(a) That is owned or leased by the Oregon State Lottery;”

The rationale behind Hass’ move primarily hinges on deference to Oregon’s many private lottery retailers like bars and convenience stores. These venues host terminals owned by the Oregon Lottery and receive a commission for the sales generated by each unit.

If Oregon residents are allowed to use their own mobile phones and tablets to place sports bets, these businesses will see a reduction in revenue. For this reason, the Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association opposes the lottery’s sports betting plans.

The Senate Committee on Finance and Revenue will meet Monday at 1:00 p.m. to discuss HB 3389 and Hass’ amendment.

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