In the United States, bi-partisan legislation has reportedly been filed that would bring federal oversight to the nation’s recently-deregulated sportsbetting industry and require operators to solely utilize data officially licensed or supplied by sports leagues.
According to a report from the Associated Press news service, the Sports Wagering Market Integrity Act of 2018 was introduced by senior United States Senators, Orrin Hatch and Charles ‘Chuck’ Schumer (pictured), on Wednesday in the wake of this year’s invalidation by the United States Supreme Court of the previous Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) prohibition.
Eight leading the way:
The news service reported that since this May ruling by the nation’s highest court, sportsbetting has gone live in the states of New Mexico, Nevada, Delaware, New Jersey, West Virginia, Rhode Island, Mississippi and Pennsylvania while lawmakers in a further 30 are said to be considering whether to follow suit. It detailed that this state of affairs has initiated a complex debate over what role the federal government should play, if any, in regulating the safety and security of sportsbetting.
Schumer reportedly told the Associated Press…
“I knew that Congress had an obligation to ensure that the integrity of the games we love was never compromised. That is why I believe the time is now to establish a strong national integrity standard for sportsbetting that will protect consumers and the games themselves from corruption.”
Road to ratification:
The Associated Press reported that the legislation from the Utah Republican and his Democratic counterpart from New York will now require the majority consent of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives alongside the signature of President Donald Trump before becoming law. If this happens, the news service explained that individual states would only be permitted to license sportsbetting operators under a strict set of guidelines to be worked out by the Office of the United States Attorney General.
The legislation has reportedly already received support from the National Football League (NFL), Major League Baseball (MLB) and the PGA Tour despite the fact that it does not mention the provision of ‘integrity fees’ to organizations such as these.
The Associated Press reported that the ratification of the Sports Wagering Market Integrity Act of 2018 would furthermore lead to the establishment of the National Sports Wagering Clearinghouse. This body would purportedly be tasked with looking for signs of corruption by collecting anonymized real-time sportsbetting data including the type, date and amount on every wager placed in the United States.
Additionally, the proposed legislation would permit wagering on professional sports and events from the Olympic Games while requiring the eight states that already offer sportsbetting to submit their licensing procedures and practices to a thorough investigation by the United States Department of Justice.
Problem gambling clauses:
Finally, the news service reported that the passage of the Sports Wagering Market Integrity Act of 2018 would also lead to the establishment of a nationwide voluntary self-exclusion program for problem gamblers as well as a scheme to fund courses designed to help those with such issues.
Hatch reportedly told the Associated Press…
“The legislation we’ve introduced today is the culmination of eight months of high-level meetings, discussions and negotiations and will serve as a placeholder for the next Congress should they decide to continue working to address these issues.”