A bill to allow and regulate online daily fantasy sports betting has been introduced in the General Assembly, but opponents say it will hurt other forms of gambling in Illinois.
The bill is intended to supercede a 2015 advisory opinion by Attorney General Lisa Madigan that daily fantasy sports betting was illegal under state gambling law. The legislation’s chief sponsor, Rep. Michael Zalewski, D-Riverside, says the regulations proposed are designed to protect players.
“I think daily fantasy sports continues to be operating in a regulatory vacuum,” Zalewski said. “This has been going on for two or three years now where their sites have operated free and clear of regulatory laws or tax rates.”
The bill would offer protections such as an age restriction of 21, prohibiting employees of the fantasy contest providers from playing, and would require an annual independent audit to ensure providers are complying with the requirements.
Zalewski said that by allowing and taxing daily fantasy sports betting in Illinois, the state could bring in potential revenue to help pay for schools and other services.
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