Around $150 billion is wagered illegally on sports every year in the U.S.

(May 29) – Gov. Polis signed a bipartisan bill sponsored by Majority Leader Alec Garnett that would legalize sports betting in Colorado. The measure now heads to the 2019 ballot for voter approval.

“Coloradans should have the option of betting on the Nuggets or the Broncos. This new funding will go toward protecting our precious water and we believe this is something everyone can support,” said Majority Leader Garnett, D-Denver. “I also hope this measure will help stamp out black market sports betting and thank my colleagues on both sides of the aisle for their support.”

HB19-1327 provides a master license to local casinos who can then contract with brick and mortar and/or internet sports betting operators to provide sports betting in Colorado. A 10 percent tax on net sports betting proceeds will be placed in a Sports Betting Fund. That fund will go towards the Water Implementation Cash Fund to support Colorado Water Plan projects that will keep our drinking water safe, our farms and ranches thriving, and keep our rivers healthy.

The measure, Proposition DD, will be on the November 2019 ballot. The portion of the bill that Gov. Polis signed authorizes casinos to open in-person sports books and creates the Water Plan Implementation Cash Fund.

The Colorado Water Conservation Board will govern the Water Plan Implementation Cash Fund. Some of the eligible projects for these funds are water storage and supply projects, conversation and land use projects, engagement and innovation activities, agricultural projects and environmental and recreation projects.

Organizations in support of this measure are the Colorado Cattlemen’s Association, the Colorado Municipal League, the Colorado River District, the Environmental Defense Action Fund, Western Resource Advocates, and Denver Water.

The bill was sponsored by Minority Leader Patrick Neville. The Senate sponsors are Sen. Kerry Donovan, D-Vail, and Sen. John Cooke, R-Greeley.

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