Many have nursed the hope that California will soon open up for sports gambling. Unfortunately, the hope has been lost on this ever happening in the near or distant future. The anticipated scheme that would have engender the activity in the state was rejected and did not even gathered enough support to be eligible for an appearance at the 2020 ballot. On top of this, the deadline for the introduction of new gambling related sports bills already expired in February.
The proposed initiative to introduce the activity was developed by a group known as Californians for Sports Betting. This is a group that has been agitating for a change in legislative to permit sports gambling within the Golden State. The proposal was initiated in June, 2018 with the hope that it will gather enough support to push it into the legislative. The proposal was supposed to gather at least 623,000 signatures in order for it to be placed on the ballots during the 2020 election. Unfortunately, the initiative didn’t receive a single signature.
According to a consultant with the group, Russell Lowery, the initiative did not get a single signature in over seven months. This has generated a conversation among stakeholders on the way forward. It is believed that this conversation will continue until the group finds a way out.
Lowery mentioned that the more the group tried to gather support for the sports gambling initiative, the more resistance they received because many people who desire to have sports gambling in California expect the lawmakers to make progress on it. Lowery opines that this is looking at the issue from the wrong perspective. According to him, the major difference between June, when the initiative was first launched, and today is that every stakeholder understands that the initiative will not materialize legislatively until some level of pressure is applied.
Fortunately for the group, there is still enough time to make another attempt. Based on the law of California, proposed initiatives need to be disseminated for 180 days and should be licensed at least 131 days before the election. The implication of this is that the sports gambling initiative has up to June 25, 2020 to complete this process.