Hearing scheduled to consider federal sports betting framework

20 September 2018

A Congressional hearing has been scheduled for next week in the US capital to consider whether a federal framework is required for sports betting across the country.

A House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security and Investigation today (Thursday) scheduled a hearing entitled ‘An Examination of Sports Betting in America’ for September 27 in Washington, DC.

Since the US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) overturned the federal ban on sports betting in May, Delaware, Mississippi, New Jersey and West Virginia have joined Nevada in offering sports wagering, with several other states embarking on regulatory processes.

“My subcommittee will look at the implications of this SCOTUS ruling and talk about what it means for the integrity of sports as well as what sorts of improper or illicit activities could arise,” subcommittee chairman Jim Sensenbrenner said.

“Ultimately, we want to determine whether or not a basic federal framework is necessary to guide states' new gambling policies.”

Last month, US Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer put forward a proposal for nationwide regulations to cover the sector.

Aside from suggesting that sports wagering should only be open to those aged 21 and over and that sportsbooks should adopt responsible advertising policies and report suspicious betting activities, Schumer said that only official league data should be used – enabling the sports properties to benefit from a lucrative new revenue stream.

Unsurprisingly, the leagues were buoyed by the proposals.

However, the American Gaming Association (AGA) is vehemently opposed to such a framework.

AGA senior vice-president Sara Slane said that her organisation is looking forward to “discussing the US gaming industry’s core principles for legalised sports betting with the Judiciary Committee at next week’s hearing”.

Picture credit: Martin Falbisoner