Betting that California is moving toward legalizing sports wagers, American Indian tribes are looking to dominate the action. A powerful coalition of tribes recently proposed a state constitutional amendment that would only allow bets inside their casinos or the state’s four major horse tracks. Their plan would also exclude licensed card clubs, which often compete with the tribes, and ban mobile or online wagering. State lawmakers have been proceeding cautiously toward drafting their own amendment to create a system for gamblers to bet on the 49ers, Warriors, Giants and other sports teams, which they say could generate hundreds of millions in tax revenue. Their plan would likely allow people to place bets on their smart phones and laptops. But the tribes’ proposal, unveiled last month, represents a preemptive strike. Should it pass, tribal casinos would be granted a near-monopoly on sports betting while severely limiting bettors’ options — and the money the state could collect. Eighteen tribes submitted the proposed constitutional amendment to the state attorney general’s office Nov. 13. Now, they’re now waiting for it to be assigned a title and summary that would let proponents begin collecting signatures to qualify a measure for the November 2020 ballot. The… Read full this story
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