DES MOINES, Iowa. – Two recently introduced sports betting bills passed in their respective committees last week and have the momentum to legalize wagering on sports in Iowa.
Bills Marching Forward
The Senate version is IA SB 1168. Even though it was introduced most recently, it is currently the closest piece of legislation to being passed. The other sports betting proposal is in the House is IA HB 198.
The House legislation has not yet passed the House State Government Committee, while the Senate bill passed its version of that committee with an 8-6 vote. The House committee will meet Monday and vote on IA HB 198.
Since the legislation from the Senate deals with implementing new taxes, the next step for the bill is to go through the Ways and Means Committee in both chambers of Congress. The House measure will also have to go through both of those committees if it passes the House Government Committee.
Some Oppose The Advancing Legislation
Faith-based group The Family Leader was present during the meetings and they shared their dissatisfaction about the sports betting bills. They believe that more people will become addicted to gambling if sports wagering is allowed to occur in the state.
Leagues were also present and they shared their concerns about the current proposals. They wanted to know what type of in-game bets would be allowed and also requested that casinos to buy the leagues data that would help them decide the bets. It is unlikely that Iowa’s Congress will give in to their demands because no state that has legal sports betting has done so thus far.
Even with the opposition from The Family Leader and current dissatisfaction from the sports leagues, both bills are advancing forward toward the path of legalizing sports betting in Iowa. Both still have a number of committees they need to go through before they will be voted on in the General Assembly.