California Daily Fantasy Sports Hearing Frames Legislative Debate Moving Forward

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California DFS hearing

California held a hearing regarding daily fantasy sports on Wednesday, helping to frame the legislature’s approach to the DFS industry moving forward.

The hearing was held in the Committee on Governmental Organization, which generally tackles the topic of gaming.

The full agenda and witness list can be seen here.

The background of the DFS debate in California

Assemblymember Adam Gray, who also chairs the GO committee, introduced a bill seeking to legalize and regulate DFS in September — before any of the increased media and government scrutiny began in October. DFS sites would need to be licensed under Gray’s bill.

Gray, in an interview in October, noted that he was not in a rush to pass regulation legislation.

Also in play in California: The attorney general, Kamala Harris, has been asked to review the legal status of DFS in the state.

Taking the temperature of California lawmakers

The lawmakers generally held their cards close to the vest. There were 12 assemblymembers in attendance, any by Legal Sports Report’s count, only six asked questions:

The committee hearing stood in stark contrast to those held in New York and New Jersey, which were sometimes contentious in the interactions between lawmakers and industry representatives.

There was no outright talk of banning DFS in the state, and like the states that have held hearings previously, it seems like regulation is the most likely legislative track in the state.

Summary of testimony

The committee put together a wide-ranging group of witnesses that encompassed most of the angles of the industry; much of the testimony had been covered during hearings in other states: