Industry Reports

Louisiana Residents to Vote on DFS Legalization on November 6th

For the time being, daily fantasy sports (DFS) are not legal in the state of Louisiana. On November 6th, local voters will be given the chance to consider giving DFS the green light in the parish.

The proposed amendment to the gambling legislation will see both the supporters and the opponents of the DFS finally clash over the need for revenue and the possible gambling-related harm that can affect more vulnerable people or the individuals who suffer from gambling addictions. Supporters of daily fantasy sports have claimed that the addition of DFS would be beneficial for the state in case that it is regulated the right way.

Proponents of DFS in Louisiana have previously shared that if DFS are given the green light they will bring additional revenue to the state. Currently, Louisiana residents are forced to travel outside the state in order to play daily fantasy sports and potential DFS revenue is drained from the state.

The decision whether to have daily fantasy sports legalized in Louisiana will be made on the parish level, with parish’s voters set to vote on the proposal on November 6th. In case that they give the nod to the proposed gambling legislation amendment, the Louisiana Gaming Control Board would take care of the regulatory and tax regime of the DFS contests.

Parish-by-Parish Legalization of DFS Proposed in House Bill 484

As mentioned above, the opponents of DFS in Louisiana have shared their concerns that the addition of the daily fantasy sports to the state’s gambling landscape would lead to an increase in problem gambling among local citizens.

Louisiana Association on Compulsive Gambling’s executive director, Janet Miller, reminded that DFS is not more addictive than other forms of gambling such as lottery or slot machines.

According to financial disclosure forms, recently, the daily fantasy sports provider FanDuel has created a new advocacy group in the state of Louisiana to help it push the legalization of DFS. Reportedly, a contribution amounting to US$154,000 was made to Fairness for Fantasy Sports (FFS) by the DFS provider on September 26th. For the time being, there is only one other contribution of US$250 which was made to the FFS by the political consultant which manages the organization.

The upcoming November 6th will see a vote on the amendments proposed in the House Bill 484 which is one of the three gaming bills passed during the legislative session of the state. The proposed piece of legislation, which was signed by Governor John Bell Edwards in May 2018, will see DFS authorization across the state, with each parish’s residents able to decide whether to greenlight daily fantasy sports betting or not. Under the House Bill 484, daily fantasy sports will also be classified as a game of skill and will be overseen by the Louisiana Gaming Control Board.