Both chambers of the Louisiana legislature agree that voters should have the opportunity approve legalization of sports betting in November.
However, they are going to go into the final week of the legislative session to work out a small detail.
The Louisiana House could have passed Sen. Cameron Henry’s bill Friday to put Louisiana sports betting in front of state parishes and been done with it.
Instead, Speaker Pro Tempore Tanner Magee opted to push for his own sports betting referendum with a technical addition. The bill passed by a vote of 73-23.
Technical change delays LA sports betting passage
Magee’s H 357 has the same language for the sports wagering ballot question as Henry’s bill, which passed in the Senate last week by a vote of 29-9.
Magee’s bill adds a section that “participation in sports wagering … shall not be considered gambling by computer.”
Henry explained to Legal Sports Report that the language is to allow casinos to input someone’s wager into a computer.
He supports the language and would include it in the regulatory bill that the legislature passes next session.
What’s next for Louisiana sports wagering
Magee’s bill now heads to the Senate, where it will need to go through a committee before reaching the Senate floor.
Henry’s bill is scheduled for debate on the House floor Wednesday. The House could move for final passage, putting the question of sports wagering on the Louisiana ballot.
He said he would be fine with amending his bill to include the added language in Magee’s bill. If the House took that route, the bill would need to return to the Senate for concurrence.
Henry said that he doesn’t care what legislative leaders decide to do as long as a sports betting referendum bill gets final passage before the Louisiana session adjourns June 1.
“The most important thing is to get sports wagering on the ballot to give the people of Louisiana the choice of if they want it in their parish,” Henry said.