What is Prop 26? Explaining the “Other” Sports Gaming Initiative in California


Two similar but different initiatives will be put to the vote in next month’s general election. Both have to do with sports betting and California’s native tribes, but in the finer details, that’s where things get a little confusing.

While most of the attention seems to be on Proposition 27, which would allow online sports betting in California, another battle is raging over Proposition 26, which is seen as an alternative plan that many Native American tribal leaders hope to have a better chance of passing.

So what is Prop 26 and how is it different from Prop 27?

Proposition 26 would pave the way for sports betting to debut in California, but under more restrictive circumstances.

While Prop 27 would allow anyone over the age of 21 to place a bet from the comfort of their couch using their computer or smartphone, Prop 26 uses the tried and true method of placing your bets in person .

Currently in California, the only sports betting allowed by law takes place at one of the four state-sanctioned racetracks. That being the horse racing – it’s not legal to bet on auto racing and dog racing is non-existent (and illegal) in California.

But if Proponents of Proposition 26 are successful, any adult of legal gambling age would be allowed to bet on various sporting events while at a racetrack, even if what you’re betting on doesn’t happen at the track. .

That’s not all, however. If passed, Proposition 26 would also allow sports betting on tribal lands. These bets should always be placed in person at a Tribal Casino.

The initiative also includes language that would allow tribal casinos to introduce dice and roulette games, which are currently illegal in California. Additionally, an oft-overlooked measure in Proposition 26 would also allow tribes to sue card rooms, which they claim are illegally offering games like blackjack.

Proponents of Prop 26 say it’s a better alternative to sports gambling compared to Prop 27. A big problem for Prop 27 is the involvement of out-of-state gaming companies who would reap the majority of the profits bets. However, a analysis by state officials found that passing Proposition 27 would still net hundreds of millions of dollars in taxes and royalties to the state.

Proposition 26 would fetch tens of millions, but put more control of the gambling landscape in the hands of California tribes, who have enjoyed a virtual monopoly in California for decades.

But while 27 would use the bulk of its funds to support homeless relief programs, gambling addiction programs, and provide support for tribes that don’t have casinos, Prop 26 funds would be treated as state tax revenue and would be used to assist with public education and community colleges, with any remainder being added to the state’s general fund.

The initiative is supported by a number of major Californian tribes that own casinos, including the Chumash Indian Band of Santa Ynez in Santa Barbara County and the Agua Caliente Indian Band of Cahuilla Indians in Santa Barbara County. River side.

Those who oppose Prop 26 are primarily Prop 27 supporters, including some small Native American tribes that don’t have casinos. Proposition 27, if passed, would provide funds to these tribes and any gaming company (like FanDuel and DraftKings) looking to enter the California market would have to partner with a tribe to make that happen. Game companies are up against 26 in hopes of breaking 27.

Also against 26 is the aforementioned gambling halls. The owners and operators of gambling halls fear that the legal action made possible by Proposition 26 could put them out of business.

Here’s what a “Yes” or “No” vote means on your November ballot:

“A YES voting on this measure means: four racetracks could offer in-person sports betting. The racetracks would pay the state a share of the sports bets made. Tribal casinos could offer in-person sports betting, roulette, and games played with dice (such as craps) if permitted by individual tribal gaming agreements with the state. Tribes would be required to bear the regulatory costs of state sports betting at casinos. Individuals and entities would have a new way to request the enforcement of certain national gambling laws.

“A NOPE voting on this measure means: Sports betting would remain illegal in California. Tribal casinos would continue to be unable to offer roulette and dice games. No changes would be made to how state gambling laws are enforced.

So if you support the introduction of sports gambling in California, but don’t think it should be done online or from smartphones and are worried that foreign companies will take the lion’s share profits, then you would probably want to vote for Proposition 26.

If you want to be able to bet on sports from your mobile device and think the money brought in by the tribes in partnership with the big game companies will do more for the state, then Prop 27 is your friend.

If you think sports betting shouldn’t be allowed in California at all, then you’d want to vote “No” to both. Make sense ? Nope?

If you’re still confused, you’re not alone. According Cal Mattersfour advertising campaigns are involved in the electoral battle, which is the costliest initiative in California history.

A campaign focuses on defeating Prop 27 alone. Another is dedicated to supporting Prop 26 while simultaneously defeating Prop 27. A third campaign, which is funded primarily by DraftKings and others, is simply targeting the passage of Prop 27. And finally, a fourth campaign, which is supported by gambling halls under threat. , aims to strictly defeat Prop 26.

Despite all the money poured into the contests (more than $500 million as of September 20), both proposals are expected to fail, according to a poll by UC Berkeley Institute of Government Studies. The study is co-sponsored by the Los Angeles Times.

Some pundits say these political ads between the many campaigns are likely to tone down a bit due to the lukewarm response from voters. That means don’t be surprised to see similar proposals in the months and years to come. The battle is barely over for what should be America’s most lucrative gaming market.

All registered voters in California will receive a mail-in ballot prior to the election. Ballots should be sent out 29 days before November 8.


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