Sports betting could see evening Iowa House debate

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A bill that would legalize betting on sporting events and fantasy sports in Iowa is scheduled for action in the Iowa House.

It passed the Senate last week and is on the Monday House debate schedule but lawmakers have been in meetings much of the day and floor debate still hadn’t begun by early evening.

The bill authorizes the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission to establish rules for betting on professional, collegiate and international sporting events, including motor racing.

It excludes betting on some events, including minor leagues and in-state college team players.

The bill also legalizes fantasy sports contests and internet fantasy sports betting but delays betting based on college sporting event statistics until May 2020.

Sports betting would be limited to those 21 and older, and the bill sets a 6.75% tax on net receipts. Taxes and licensing fees could bring in estimated annual revenue of $2.3 million to $4 million annually.

The Senate approved the bill Wednesday 31-18 with no debate. Twelve Republicans and six Democrats voted against it.

States began legalizing sports gambling last year after the U.S. Supreme Court ended Nevada’s monopoly.

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