Tennessee State Capitol Building

Tennessee sports betting bill passes committee

On Tuesday, the House State Committee passed a bill that would legalize mobile sports betting in the state of Tennessee.

The Committee passed the bill, titled HB 1, with a vote of 12-5. The bill will now be sent to the House Government Operations Committee for review.

If the bill passes the next stage, it will then be sent to the state’s 99 member House for a vote. From here the bill will be sent to the Senate for approval. If the Senate is on board then the legislation will be sent to Tennessee’s Governor where he will decide if he wants to sign the bill into law.

The bill was originally filed in November and has undergone multiple amendments since its introduction.

Last month the bill was amended to limit sports betting to mobile devices only.

During Tuesday’s hearing, the bill received several amendments. One of the new amendments would prohibit sportsbooks from offering proposition bets on collegiate sporting events.

Another notable amendment to the bill includes the allocation of 5% of tax revenue to the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse to help combat gambling addiction.

A list of people that would be prohibited from placing wagers was also added to the bill on Tuesday. According to the amendment, team owners, athletes and anyone with access to confidential information would be barred from betting on sports in Tennessee.

HB 1 would require individual cities and towns in the state to hold local elections to authorize sports betting and would charge the Tennessee Lottery with regulating the activity.

SB 16, a companion bill to HB 1, is set to be discussed by the Senate State and Local Government Committee but a date has yet to be set.

If both SB 16 and HB 1 are successful, Tennessee would become the first state in the US to adopt a mobile-only sports betting model.


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