Senate committee clears Louisiana sports betting, but not online gambling

Senate committee clears Louisiana sports betting, but not online gambling

The U.S. state of Louisiana has moved closer towards legalizing sports betting after securing the nod of a Senate committee.

Senate committee clears Louisiana sports betting, but not online gamblingWWL AM 870 reported that members of the Louisiana Senate Committee on Juidiciary voted unanimously to send Senate Bill 266, authored by Sen. Danny Martiny, to the full Senate for consideration. In a nutshell, SB 266 would allow Louisiana residents to punt “on any type of sports event, including but not limited to football, basketball, baseball, hockey, boxing, tennis, wrestling, jai alai, or other sports contest or event.”

Under SB 266, betting on professional leagues will be allowed at Harrah’s New Orleans casino, the state’s 15 floating casinos, four racetrack casinos, 200 video poker truck stops and the more than 1,000 bars and restaurants with video poker machines in the state.

The members of the Senate committee believe that it is essential to pass SB 266 before the U.S. Supreme Court decides to lift the ban on sports betting in order not to fall behind its neighboring states, who are expected to pass similar legislation.

“When the Supreme Court rules, I can assure you that Mississippi will be up and running in 30 to 45 days—if not sooner—and so will Arkansas,” Martiny said, according to the news outlet.

For Senator Nobry Chabert, legalizing sports betting in Louisiana will help shore up the state’s financial coffers, as well as attract more tourists.

The Supreme Court is expected to make a decision on whether to overturn Professional Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992, which limits single-game sports betting to the state of Nevada.

The push for legal sports betting received a boost during an early December hearing after a majority of the Supreme Court justices appeared to agree with New Jersey that PASPA violates the U.S. Constitution’s protection of state’s rights.

Just when everybody thought that the senators are beginning to cozy up with gambling bills, the same committee has again shelved a bill seeking to allow online gambling in Louisiana.

The Martiny-sponsored SB 322 met lots of objections from committee members, who claimed the measure would hurt video poker facilities.

“People are going to stay at home and do all the gambling, just like they do all of their shopping at home today,” said Senator Gregory Tarver, according to the news outlet.