Lawmakers in the U.S. state of Georgia are taking yet another swing at regulating daily fantasy sports (DFS) this year after a similar measure died in 2017.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that the state Senate Regulated Industries Committee unanimously approved House Bill 118, which seeks to legalize fantasy sports in the state.
Currently, Georgia is considered to be in the gray area where there are no laws regulating the DFS sector. Proponents filed HB 118 in order to permit the registration, regulation, and taxation of fantasy contest operators.
If the measure is enacted, players 18-years-old or younger won’t be allowed to participate in online fantasy sports contests. College athletes will also be prohibited from playing the games.
Fantasy sports contests could become Georgia’s newest cash cow as the state plans to impose a 6 percent tax on fantasy companies, with the Department of Secretary of State handling the oversight.
State Rep. Trey Kelly, one of the bill’s sponsors, admitted that he doesn’t play fantasy sports at all, but he wants to help improve the fan experience by regulating the activity. He doesn’t believe that fantasy sports are games of chance.
On the other hand, Senate Regulated Industries Committee Chairman Frank Ginn, R-Danielsville, is convinced that HB 118 will protect players from smaller fantasy sports companies that refuse to pay out winnings.
Alabama lawmakers kill fantasy sports bill
Elsewhere in the U.S., Alabama lawmakers have thumbed down a measure seeking to allow the operations of DFS in the state.
Alabama Today reported that SB 325 took a beating on the Senate floor after a majority of lawmakers decided to scrap the measure.
In a nutshell, SB 325 aimed to regulate the game by asking operators to obtain a provisional license from the state. The amount of the registration fee set by DFS proponents in Alabama depended on the size of the operator.
DFS giants like DraftKings and FanDuel would have paid a hefty $85,000 registration fee to operate in Alabama while small operators needed $5,000 to register.
Except for buying securities and commodities, insurance, and some “grandfathered” activities, gambling is prohibited in Alabama.
Like in Georgia, Alabama lawmakers had been attempting to enact a DFS law in recent years. In 2017, the DFS bill died in the Senate after legislators failed to take up the measure before the session ended.