Lawmakers in Arizona have introduced a piece of legislation that would authorize sports betting on Indian reservations only.
The bill titled SB 1158, would amend that’s state laws and permit sports betting to take place at Indian reservations and nowhere else in the state.
This makes Arizona the first state to consider permitting sports betting only at tribal gaming venues.
Text from the bill says: “Each federally recognized Indian tribe that has a tribal-state gaming compact entered into pursuant to chapter 6 of this title and that has tribal headquarters on Indian lands located in this state may operate sports betting as defined in section 12-3301. No other person or entity may operate sports betting.”
Arizona has one of the largest tribal gambling markets in the US.
There are 16 federally recognized tribes that are engaged in gambling operations within the state of Arizona. These 16 tribes operate 24 casinos that offer Las Vegas-style casino gambling.
If SB 1158 is successful, sports betting in Arizona would be regulated by the Department of Gaming.
The bill puts forth a tax rate of 6.75% on adjusted gross receipts and will not allow bets to be placed on sporting events that are prohibited by the NCAA.
The bill does not include provisions for mobile or online sports betting.
This is the first step that Arizona has taken towards legalizing sports betting since the repeal of the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA) last year.
When it comes to tribal groups and sports betting, a number of tribal communities have already launched sports betting operations.
The Choctaw band of Mississippi Indians have launched sports betting operations at the Pearl River Resort and have plans to launch the state’s first mobile sports betting app.
Furthermore, The Santa Ana Star Casino Hotel which is owned and operated by the Tamaya Nation offers legal and regulated sports betting in New Mexico under a tribal-state gaming compact.
In other states where sports betting is not yet legal tribal groups have begun striking partnerships with some of the biggest names in sports betting.