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Indiana Sports Betting Bill Includes Payoff to Sports Leagues

An Indiana lawmaker is looking to make regulated sports betting more appealing to professional sports leagues by including a one percent “integrity fee” in his latest effort to legislate legal wagering. The fee would be collected by operators and used by the leagues to combat the kind of game-fixing that doesn’t really flourish in the regulated environment.

HB 1325, which was introduced by ndiana Rep. Alan Morrison would allow for Indiana gaming operators to offer sports betting to players, should the federal government approve the move. The bill also includes language that would require those same operators to pay one percent of the handle on each sport to the “governing body” of that sport. In layman’s terms, that means that professional sports leagues would get one percent of the handle on any given game.

Indiana’s take on paying off sports leagues to get their buy in on regulated sports betting is fairly unique and completely untested in the United States. Spokesmen from the NBA and MLB, the two most sports-betting friendly American leagues, have not commented on the proposal.

The integrity fee would be collected in addition to a whopping 9.25 percent revenue tax on sports betting operators. This rate is through the roof compared to the 6.25 percent that the State of Nevada collects on revenue (along with a .25 percent integrity fee that’s forwarded to the Feds).

While a number of US States are considering adding regulated sports betting to their gaming menu, should the US Supreme Court approve it, so far Indiana is the only one attempting to work with sports leagues on the deal. A similar sports betting bill is winding its way through the Indiana House, without the integrity fee.

The US Supreme Court is expected to rule on regulated sports betting some time this spring.

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