Changes Coming to Tennessee Sports Betting
There is finally a resolution to a pair of bills that were looking to change the regulatory body of Tennessee sports betting.
Since the launch on November 1, the Tennessee Education Lottery has been in charge of overseeing and regulating the industry.
A pair of bills, Senate Bill 588 and House Bill 1267, were both introduced earlier this year, and there was not much difference in the pieces of legislation. Lawmakers in both chambers wanted to remove the TEL from the top governing body and instead put the Sports Wagering Advisory Council in charge.
These two groups have worked together since November; lawmakers wanted these roles reversed. After much discussion and debate, each bill was set for an official vote before the general session ended.
House Bill 1267 never actually made it for an official vote as it died in the house. The House still had a chance to make a change, and they were presented with voting on Senate Bill 588 first.
On May 4, the House voted to approve SB 588 on a vote of approval of 73-13. One day later, the Senate voted to approve SB 588 by a vote of 27-0, sending the bill to Governor Bill Lee.
Governor Lee is expected to sign this bill into law later this year, and it will officially become a new sports betting regulation. This change will not go into effect until January 1, 2022.
The Sports Wagering Advisory Council has already started to take over a larger role in the decision-making when it comes to sports betting while working with the TEL.
Lanigan Out of TEL
Earlier this week, Susan Lanigan announced that she was retiring from her current role as chairwoman of the Tennessee Education Lottery. Lanigan was under contract through 2024 but has abruptly decided to leave her position early.
Before leaving her position, Lanigan nominated Will Carver and John Crosslin to new advisory roles with the TEL. Carver will be the new chairman, and Crosslin will assume the position of vice-chair.
The temporary license suspension of Action 24/7 also came into question at the most recent meeting of the Tennessee Education Lottery. According to the CEO of Action 24/7, the license has been reinstated after receiving a letter from the TEL.
This process was not handled well by the TEL, to begin with, and that is one of the biggest reasons that lawmakers were looking to take a chance in the advisory council. There have been a number of issues since sports betting launched on November 1, and those issues will now be brought to the Sports Wagering Advisory Council beginning in the new year.
There are still at least four different sports licenses pending in the state of Tennessee, and it’s unclear when these sites will be given final approval to launch. ZenSports is one of the companies looking to offer sports betting, and it is also seeking to offer the first-ever peer-to-peer betting platform in the US.
Check back for more TN sports betting news and the latest sports news in The Volunteer State.
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