In the United States, Mississippi has become the twelfth state to legalize daily fantasy sports after Republican governor Phil Bryant signed legislation into law on Monday authorizing the online games.
Known as House Bill 967, the legislation allows the Mississippi Gaming Commission to issue three-year daily fantasy sports licenses to operators that have handed over a fee of $5,000. In return, these firms will be required to pay an 8% tax on net revenues, which have been defined as “the total of all fantasy contest entry fees that an operator collects from all players less the total of all sums paid out as cash prizes”.
The legislation, which was launched in January by Richard Bennett, a Republican member of the Mississippi House Of Representatives, passed through the southern state’s lower legislative chamber in February before being approved by the higher Mississippi State Senate on March 1. The legislation additionally gives the Mississippi Gaming Commission the authority to conduct background checks on potential daily fantasy sports firms along with annual financial audits while prohibiting operator employees and anyone under the age of 18 from taking part in games.
Bennett, who also serves as Chairman of the Mississippi House Of Representatives’ Gaming Committee, revealed that twelve companies have so already expressed an interest in applying for a Mississippi daily fantasy sports license and that this would immediately net the state $60,000 in licensing fees along with approximately $5 million in annual tax revenues.
In legalizing daily fantasy sports, Mississippi has joined a club that already included Virginia, Rhode Island, Colorado, Indiana, Kansas, Maryland, Massachusetts, Missouri, New York, Tennessee and West Virginia while 23 other states are known to be working on legislation that would create a regulatory framework for the online games. Conversely, the activity has been banned in Arizona, Iowa, Louisiana, Montana and Washington.