The state of Colorado doesn’t have a great history of success when it comes to the matter of gambling. Several bills have failed to pass, but this year there is genuine interest for sports betting to be legal within the area. Timing could definitely be better for a new bill currently in the works considering Colorado has already nixed a few big topic bills this year.
Around this time last year, legislators were starting to see sports betting as a real possibility for the state of Colorado. The state has been fairly slow to propose any gambling legislation since the overturn of the federal ban last year, but during that time it became clear that there was interest for sports betting to be legalized.
One of the larger issues with gambling in Colorado is the laws regarding where casinos can be located. Currently it is quite restrictive, which would impact the ability of many to place sports bets in person. Sports betting is often limited to placing bets at in-person locations during the first phases of legalization, which would make it difficult for Colorado residents to access.
To make matters even more concerning, Colorado has a long history of rejecting any attempts to make gambling more prevalent. The last time the state shut one down was back in 2014, when they rejected an amendment to allow gambling only at specific race tracks. It has been five years since then though, and the recent uplifting of the federal sports betting ban can only help any new attempts to legalize it in Colorado.
The Colorado legislative session has also been trending poorly for getting new bills passed. This year, they’ve shut down a bill that would have made abortions more accessible, and another that would restructure the calculation of property taxes. Many consider sports betting to be another topic on par with the intensity of discussion the other two rejected bills prompted.
The landscapes of both gambling and legislation in Colorado aren’t very pretty right now, but that hasn’t stopped representatives from planning to introduce a new bill regarding gambling. Alec Garnett of the Democratic Assembly has been fairly outspoken about bring sports betting legislation to the table, and will certainly submit a bill at some point during the legislative session.
While it appears that it might be a longshot for the sports betting bill to pass whenever it is proposed, it shows that Colorado definitely has interest in bringing it to the area. If a bill doesn’t pass this year, don’t rule Colorado out for another attempt in 2020.