On Tuesday, the bill got final passage in the House of Delegates, but it now contains an important amendment.
The NBA and Major League Baseball released separate statements Monday denouncing West Virginia's legislation, but they've jointly retained counsel and communications representatives to press their message in the state. The NBA argued for a 1% integrity fee at hearings in NY, with the money going towards compliance, enforcement, monitoring, investigations and education.
"Any sports betting legislation must include clear, robust and enforceable protections to mitigate any possible risks to our game", Major League Baseball stated.
Along with betting on sports events at the casinos, the bills make betting through those sites available on mobile apps for people who are physically located in West Virginia. It remains to be seen whether the grassroots organizing that led to Dominion's historic loss on the amendment will be able to overcome support for the entire bill. The law quickly advancing in West Virginia unfortunately falls short of meeting those critical standards. "We commend the delegates who have sided with ratepayers as they work to improve this deeply flawed legislation".
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The NBA released a statement saying in part, "We do not believe the bill now under consideration will achieve the critical goals of protecting consumers and the integrity of our league".
The version of this bill passed in the Senate calls for state regulators to review Dominion's rates every three years.
"We are hopeful the legislature will complete a significant overhaul of the law and bolster protections".
"I congratulate the House for winning the battle, but if you take away the SCC's jurisdiction you're losing the war", Petersen said.
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"Billions have been spent on protecting the integrity of our sports", he said.
Beyond a lobbying document from both MLB and the National Basketball Association that Legal Sports Report reported on last week, it appears to be pro baseball's first public stance on the wave of sports betting legislation that is gaining traction across the country.
Petersen said he was surprised the House agreed to the Toscano amendment, but that it doesn't get at the fundamental problem he sees in the legislation: That it continues to prevent the SCC from overseeing rates and lets the utility spend its excess on new projects.
"We just don't like doing it on the fly", Habeeb said.
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The current pace of activity in West Virginia, the support of the state's gaming interests and the amount of time the state has spent on the subject already makes the MLB's outcome of a wholesale overhaul of the bill appear unlikely.