Latest California wagering proposal stalls due to lack of unity

california betting news february 2024

Updated February 12, 2024By Chris Boline
california betting news february 2024

Alas poor Yurick, another California sports betting proposal has met its untimely end. Per a recent report, the sports betting duo of Kasey Thompson and Reeve Collins presented their betting initiatives last year to legalize sports betting in the state. As noted in this space and in other reports, the duo had until April of this year to secure 874,641 valid signatures to make it on the November 2024 ballot. However, Thompson was recently quoted as saying there is no unity on this proposal and “I’m standing good to my word and not moving forward.” More specifically, the article was not saying that this proposal mainly came to an end as a result of two likely factors: tribal opposition and a lack of support for the overall vision of this proposal. 

For this article, SBS will be going over what to look for from the latest gaming news coming from the Golden State and also more notes on the landscape of California wagering. 

The initial goal of proposal was to benefit tribes in CA

As noted in the same article, Thompson, a gaming industry veteran, and Collins, a blockchain entrepreneur, presented the initiatives last year to legalize sports betting in California. Thompson explained that the main goal of the initiatives was to benefit the tribes in the states, however, he later concluded it was actually dividing them. Speaking on the matter, Thompson said, “I see that now the needed unity is not coming, and so I’m standing good to my word and not moving forward.” Thompson and Collins, who published the two proposals, 23-0030 Amendment 1 and Initiative 23-0031, were attempting to get the legislation on the November 2024 ballot, meaning they had until April to secure the necessary valid signatures. Moreover, it was also reported that Thompson was ready to print around 1.2 million petitions to be signed by Californians to push the initiatives through. 

However, the pair ran into opposition from the state’s native tribal groups from the start. The duo proposed giving exclusivity to state tribes to offer retail and online sports betting on their land, with 25% of profits going to non-gaming tribes. If the initiatives were passed, they would create $50 million for every California tribe in the first five years of legal betting, according to Thompson. Despite this, the pair failed to get the backing from the tribes, facing continued opposition from the state’s three biggest Native American groups. Realizing they weren’t going to get any further, Thompson and Collins decided to withdraw the proposals this week. 

Sports betting again faces uncertain future in state

According to the article, one figure who has been very vocal regarding his disapproval is California tribal leader Victor Rocha. Last year, he called Collins and Thompson “a special kind of stupid” when confirming that they have “no tribal support” for their California betting proposals. With these latest updates, it remains to be seen if legal sports betting will eventually occur in California. It has certainly been a hot topic of discussion since the ending of the federal ban in May 2018, particularly because California is the most populated state with 38 million residents. Yet, without the tribes supporting such measures, it seems as though there will be an uphill battle for any initiative to gain significant traction. 

One measure that appeared to be going in the direction was Proposition 27, led by FanDuel and DraftKings. However, the state’s tribes vehemently opposed Proposition 27, spending $180m to cancel it. In November 2022, 83% of votes went against it. Notably, the tribe-backed Proposition 26 was also rejected, despite getting a lot more votes. Of course, this has some peculiar timing with the “Big Game” just around the corner. Per the American Gaming Association, this year, an estimated one out of every four Americans is expected to place a bet on the Super Bowl, adding up to roughly $23 billion in wagers. 

However, in California, those bets cannot be placed in most situations. While wagering at the race track and gambling at tribal casinos is perfectly legal in the Golden State, along with card rooms, the lottery, and a “Bingo night” when it comes to gambling on sports, that is a no-go, per one article. Of course, one expert recently pointed out and reiterated a common point: as the fifth-largest economy in the entire world, the amount of potential tax revenue California is losing every year has made sports betting a huge priority. In the meantime, most other states have already given the green light to this form of gambling. 

Even more news and info about California wagering

Once you are all up to speed on the latest news coming from the Golden State and the ever-changing landscape of sports betting there, check out the variety of resources at SBS. Of course, for even more insights on the topic at hand, the California sports betting sites guide is a must-read resource where you can learn more about the latest news regarding sports betting in the Golden State. Conversely, for those looking to maximize their bets, our best bonus betting sites breakdown is a must-read resource. Here you can find a catalog of the latest different bonus offers and also tips for getting the most out of promotions. Finally, for those on the go, the best betting apps rundown is another fantastic guide that gives you the rundown on mobile betting sites and how you can always stay on top of the action. 

About the Author

Chris Boline

Chris Boline

As a devout aficionado of sports, Chris Boline has carved a career within the athletic realm. A skilled scribe, he boasts a decade-long portfolio that encompasses coverage of the NBA G League, the Los Angeles Chargers, football in the Mountain West Conference, and basketball.
Beyond his professional pursuits, Chris is deeply invested in his community and dedicates his leisure hours to serving on boards, collaborating with community organizations, and cherishing the company of loved ones.

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Author: Richard Gonzales