Whereas there are nonetheless miles to go earlier than an settlement is reached, Minnesota sports activities betting laws is again on the transfer.
The Senate State and Native Authorities and Veterans Committee superior an amended MN sports activities betting invoice, SF 1949, Wednesday, 8-5. The modification is an try and work towards a deal between the state’s tribes and horse racing tracks earlier than the session adjourns Might 22.
Whereas Sen. Matt Klein mentioned taking away tribal exclusivity is a nonstarter, he needs to discover a solution to fulfill the tracks’ wishes. A number of Republican lawmakers, who need tracks included, mentioned throughout the assembly they’re keen to work to discover a answer.
“The tracks have a reputable concern and ensuring they’re sustainable is a purpose,” Klein mentioned Wednesday. “There are methods we are able to be certain that the tracks can really feel included.”
Minnesota Senate work comes as Home invoice stalled
Rep. Zack Stephenson has led the MN sports activities betting effort the previous two years. Final yr, his invoice superior to the Senate however stalled when the then-Republican managed chamber needed to incorporate the tracks.
Stephenson was again within the combine this yr however hit the again burner earlier this session because the monitor conundrum reemerged. Klein, a Senate sponsor of the invoice, picked up the laws to resolve the problem within the Senate.
Klein amended the invoice within the committee to direct 30% of sports activities betting tax income to the tracks. Whereas appreciative of the trouble, representatives from the tracks testified that they need sports activities betting licenses, as they concern the business will take enterprise away.
Sports activities betting numbers recreation in Minnesota
Courting Republican Senators is important to the sports activities betting laws, as at the very least two Democrat-Farmer Labor Senators have mentioned they’re a “no” vote on any playing growth, according to MinnPost. The DFL already managed the Home and took management of the Senate in November’s election with a one-seat benefit.
Sharing some income may very well be a solution to court docket at the very least a couple of Republican lawmakers with out sharing licenses. The tribes are supportive of the plans to incorporate tracks with out giving them licenses, a key as a result of tribes have killed sports activities betting laws previously.
Gov. Tim Walz helps MN sports activities betting however has mentioned he won’t signal a invoice with out tribal exclusivity. Skilled sports activities groups in Minnesota despatched a letter in assist of the tribal-exclusive plan earlier this session. Tribes maintain on line casino gaming exclusivity in Minnesota.
Taking part in second fiddle to marijuana
One business supply mentioned they might be shocked if the invoice passes this yr as a result of “legalizing marijuana is extra of a precedence.” Lawmakers additionally need to end the funds and a invoice to supply paid household go away.
With no settlement but between the tracks and tribes, the hole may be too massive to beat with simply two weeks left within the session.
The Minnesota legislature, nonetheless, can carry over laws into 2024, so lawmakers may choose the sports activities betting invoice up the place it leaves off.