Legislative progress underway for Iowa Tribe’s sports gambling agreement with Kansas • Kansas Reflector

The Iowa Tribe of Kansas and Nebraska is set to allow sports wagering on reservation land in northeast Kansas after a joint House and Senate committee unanimously voted to amend the state’s gambling compact with the tribe. The Committee on Inter-Tribal Relations endorsed the sports-betting agreement, which needs approval from both chambers of the Legislature and Gov. Laura Kelly before being submitted to the U.S. Department of Interior for review.

The Prairie Band Potawatomie Nation was the first tribe in Kansas to complete the sports-wagering process in July 2023, after years of debate and following a mobile and retail sports gambling bill that was approved by the Legislature in 2022 and signed by Gov. Kelly. The bill applied to various state-licensed casinos, including Boot Hill Casino & Resort, Hollywood Casino at Kansas Speedway, Kansas Star Casino, and Kansas Crossing Casino.

Tribes in Kansas are allowed to participate in sports gambling on professional and collegiate events but must follow a different procedure for regulatory approval than other states. Tribal casinos interested in sports betting must request approval from the governor and engage in negotiations to amend the compact. According to Justin Whitten, chief counsel to Gov. Kelly, the revised compact allows in-person sports wagering on reservation land held by the Iowa Tribe of Kansas and Nebraska. The compact includes a trigger mechanism for potential remote online wagering from locations throughout the state.

By Sophia Gonzalez

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