West Flagler Continues Fight Against Florida In Recent Sports Betting News

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Written By Giovanni Shorter | Last Updated
Sports Betting News

The Super Bowl might be over, but a major rivalry match is still ongoing in the Supreme Court of the United States. West Flagler has submitted a writ of certiorari to the U.S. Supreme Court to review the legality of Florida sports betting. Meanwhile, Massachusetts has seen two operators exit its gaming market. Over in Oklahoma, lawmakers are aiming to push a sports betting bill. Let’s break down all the recent sports betting news in these markets.

Latest Sports Betting News

Florida v. West Flagler Sports Betting War Continues

Ever since the D.C. Circuit Court ruled in favor of the Seminole Tribe’s gaming compact to allow online sports betting in Florida, West Flagler has been vying to stop operations. This latest filing is another step in the ongoing fight between the two parties.

“As different jurisdictions make different decisions regarding the legality of sports betting, it is critical that this Court not allow the unlawful approach taken by Florida to become a model, or for the D.C. Circuit decision to create confusing and misleading precedent.”

Reads the petition.

The reasoning behind the petition being raised by West Flagler is as follows:

  • “IGRA does not authorize the approval of a compact that provides a statewide tribal monopoly over online sports gaming.” IGRA allows the secretary “to approve any Tribal-State compact entered into between an Indian tribe and a State governing gaming on Indian lands.”
  • “The DC Circuit’s analysis of UIGEA conflicts with the Ninth Circuit interpretation in a similar case.”
  • “This case raises an important national issue regarding the constitutionality of granting a statewide gambling monopoly to an Indian tribe.”

In West Flagler’s closing arguments, the focus was on the risk of having the Florida method become normalized. West Flagler argues that if the U.S. Supreme Court allows the Florida Compact to be law, then other markets could follow.

So far, the Seminole Tribe of Florida has been successful in recent court hearings. Will West Flagler make any headway in stopping betting?

Betr And WynnBET Massachusetts

During the Massachusetts Gaming Commission meeting, two operators were approved to exit the market. Those operators are Betr and WynnBET. The pair will halt their Massachusetts sports betting operations officially on Feb. 23, one year after gaining temporary licenses.

WynnBET is also home to the retail sportsbook and Encore Boston Harbor. For now, Encore will continue to run its retail operation under the name WynnBET, with plans to change the name at some point. The reason for WynnBET exiting Massachusetts is part of a full effort to scale back its online betting operation. WynnBET has already exited ten other markets before Massachusetts.

The reasoning for Betr’s exit has not been disclosed. The company is still explaining, with recent announcements to launch in Colorado, Kentucky, and Pennsylvania.

Sports Betting In Oklahoma Incoming?

Oklahoma lawmakers met for their legislative session, and sports betting was a topic of discussion. Sen. Cassey Murdock introduced SB 1434, which would allow the Oklahoma Lottery Commission to host sports wagering in the Sooner State. The was referred to the Oklahoma Senate Rules Committee, where it was then referred to the Appropriations Committee.

The bill would regulate both online and retail sports betting. Applications would require a $500,000 licensing fee and an annual $100,000 fee. Online sportsbooks would be taxed at a 20% rate, while retail would see a 15% tax rate. Experts estimate more than $9 million in tax revenue could come from the betting market.

Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt has publicly shown his support for a local betting market. Oklahoma lawmakers attempted to push sports betting in 2023, but the bill died in the Senate after passing in the House. Hopefully, this year’s measure starting in the Senate will bode better.