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Florida Petition to Legalize Sports Betting Led by FanDuel & DraftKings

Florida Petition to Legalize Sports Betting Led by FanDuel & DraftKings

by Tanner KernJune 29, 2021

Florida Petition to Legalize Sports Betting Led by FanDuel & DraftKings: Florida sports betting belongs to the Seminole tribe currently, but companies like FanDuel and DraftKings are trying to alter this fact in the state. The political action committee is attempting to expand the industry through a 2022 constitutional amendment, but support still needs to be garnered in the state.

Call for Florida Petition Signatures

The Florida Education Champions Political Action Committee began the social media plea for signature on Friday to add a 2022 constitutional amendment to expand iGaming. The political action committee was quick to act because the Florida Division of Elections authorized the ballot initiative to begin on Thursday.

The PAC started its Facebook site on Tuesday, June 22, to prepare for the ballot initiative to expand its statewide reach. DraftKings and FanDuel are the two conglomerates behind the initiative, and their financial power should help the ballot pass.

PAC spokeswoman Christina Johnson announced that the two gaming companies were helping the committee with the ballot measure.

Social Media is Critical

The PAC is emphasizing Facebook to attract viewers of all ages throughout the state. The page invites readers to submit a request for a Florida petition to expand betting. These will be sent through the mail.

If a Florida resident wants to vote, they must fill out the ballot and return it to PAC in a signed envelope. The PAC must receive 891,589 signatures and approval from the Florida Supreme Court to have an amendment placed on the ballot.

The Florida Education Champions is sponsoring the proposed amendment to make sports betting legal throughout the state. The amendment will delegate some gambling tax revenue to Florida’s Educational Enhancement Trust Fund.

The revenue would mainly come from lottery ticket sales, slot machines, and other small gambling categories in the state. The taxes would benefit K-12 public schools, state colleges and universities, and student aid.

Issues with the Tribal Gaming Compact

Governor Ron DeSantis and the Seminoles crafted an updated gaming compact earlier in 2021, giving the tribe complete control of sports betting. Sportsbooks like DraftKings and FanDuel would not have easy access to the state, and they would have to utilize Hard Rock technology.

Florida could be a massive sports betting market, so this compact was not accepted by sports betting operators throughout the United States. The compact has still not been approved on the federal level, but it’s expected to pass with ease.

The legislature crafted a sports betting bill on May 19, and DeSantis signed the bill into law six days later. The compact will give the state at least $2.5 billion in tax revenue over the next five years. Therefore, the state would rather keep the current sports betting framework because there is a risk that this money would be lost.

If the PAC is successful with the ballot initiative, it will likely be approved in 2022. Nevertheless, there will be battles from the Seminole tribe against DraftKings and FanDuel to maintain control of betting in the state.

An open sports betting market in FL would be lucrative, but it will not be taken well by the Seminole tribe because of the latest gaming compact.

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About The Author
Tanner Kern
Tanner Kern is a former Division I football player at Lafayette College and a graduate of the University of Connecticut. He is a former writer for USA Wager and!