Virginia First State to regulate Daily Fantasy Sports?

The daily fantasy sports (DFS) industry continues to come under fire from lawmakers in various U.S. states. But this hasn’t stopped Virginia from taking serious steps to regulate DFS.

Virginia’s legislature has already passed a bill that would legalize and regulate DFS. Now, the only step that remains involves Governor Terry McAuliffe signing off on the legislation.

Assuming Gov. McAuliffe does sign the bill, Virginia would become the first U.S. state to regulate the activity. If he rejects it, the legislation will go back to the Virginia Assembly. Assuming McAuliffe does nothing within the next week, the bill will automatically pass.

According to NewsPlex.com, some Virginia residents would be very pleased if the state legalizes DFS.

“It’s a good revenue stream for Virginia,” said Jensen Clark, a Charlottesville native. “You look at the amount of fantasy leagues that are already out there, and many of them are betting on sports anyways. So at least the Government would make some money off of it.”

“There is so much legislation for things like casinos, that it is good to finally see that this really unchecked form of gambling has something put forth about it,” said UVA student Janette Donkle.

The bill calls on potential DFS sites to meet the following qualifications:

– Pay a $50,000 dollar fee to register for a DFS operation.
– Register with the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Sevices (DACS)
– Allow DACS to investigate any potential violations of the registration.
– Allow an annual audit of all registered operators.
– Require all participants to be 18 years of age or older.

Three states in the U.S. already offer online gaming, with Delaware, Nevada and New Jersey all featuring online casino games and/or poker. But no state currently has DFS on the table. In fact, most states are in the process of banning the activity.

Arizona, Iowa, Louisiana, Montana, Nevada and Washington have all banned DFS, while New York is currently fighting industry leaders DraftKings and FanDuel in court.

But popular perception is that these states want unregulated DFS sites gone so they can open up their own regulated operations. This would then allow states to reap extra revenue from the popular activity, rather than watching unregulated operations control the industry.