Lockdowns Affect US States’ Plans to Tax Sports Betting Activities

Lockdowns Affect US States’ Plans to Tax Sports Betting Activities

A lockdown around the country has shuttered many casinos and affected the gambling revenues pouring into the coffers of US states. Sports betting, which was expected to bring them millions of dollars in fresh revenue has also come to a screeching halt as major sporting events around the world have been canceled.

November ballots will be affected

Sports betting efforts across the country have been affected because of the lockdowns and social distancing orders from the authorities. The states have closed several businesses and advised people to stay home. However, this has affected the status of several ballot initiatives in November. Petition management, which requires gathering signature in person, has been badly affected because of this.

Lockdowns Affect US States’ Plans to Tax Sports Betting Activities

Kimball Petition Management’s Fred Kimball said,

“The coronavirus is a huge blow to direct democracy. I’ve never seen anything like it – never. Usually, I’m the guy they call to fight through this and get a lot of stuff done at the last minute, but this year there’s nothing I can do.”

California is among the 24 states that are taking initiative to introduce a ballot in November to make significant changes to their laws. The state has to decide whether it aims to make sports betting legal. The tribes of the states are leading this effort but their hard work could easily go down the drain because people are averse to meeting people and signing a paper. Some petition organizers are even planning to provide separate pens to each individual to ensure that there is no spread of the virus. However, such efforts may not have as much effect as expected.

Initiatives will take a beating

Michael Latner, a political science professor from the California Polytechnic State University said that the pandemic has changed the way advocacy organizations will try to influence the state’s decisions. He added that the work of these groups is to canvass, go out, meet people and gather their support their cause. All these activities now have to stop.

When the signature drives come to a standstill, the proponents now have no other option but to wait for the lockdown to be lifted so they can start their activities again. They will still be able to go to the lawmakers and introduce their ideas to them. However, most proponents of ballot measures consider this exercise unfeasible. It may not be easy to convince a lawmaker to support their initiative and sponsor a bill for the same in the legislature.

About sherlock

Sherlock Gomes loves to write and express his views on anything related to Gaming, Gambling, & Casino. He has been covering Gaming for more than two years now.