Sports betting coalition submits petition to Missouri Secretary of State

Winning for Missouri Education Submits Signatures
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Winning for Missouri Education is solidifying its efforts to bring online sports to the Show-Me State.

The campaign, led by six of Missouri’s professional sports teams, has submitted more than 340,000 petition signatures to the Secretary of State’s office in an attempt to authorize online and retail sports betting in the state via ballot initiative in the November election.

“As one of only 12 states without legalized sports betting, Missouri took a significant step forward today in ensuring that these revenues stay in Missouri to help our communities and classrooms,” said spokesman Jack Cardetti. “We are grateful for the support from Missouri’s professional sports franchises, who have been crucial in creating the opportunity for Missourians to vote directly on this issue in November.”

Winning for Missouri Education, which was formed in November 2023, has submitted the petition signatures for certification while being supported by its pro sports team members, which include the St. Louis Cardinals, St. Louis Blues, St. Louis City SC, Kansas City Current, Kansas City Royals, reigning Super Bowl champions Kansas City Chiefs.

The coalition has successfully submitted the signatures amid a requirement by Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft to collect at least 180,000 signatures by May 5 for the issue to be considered in November. By February, the group secured more than 100,000 signatures.

If the signatures are certified, Missourians have the opportunity to vote on a constitutional amendment to bring a new revenue stream and source of entertainment to the state.

“It’s time that Missouri is allowed to keep that tax revenue for our classrooms and legalize responsible sports betting that benefits our fans and our sports teams,” added St. Louis City General Counsel and COO Jason Thein. “St. Louis City SC is encouraged to see strong statewide support for this issue, and for Missouri education.”

Proposed framework of wagering in Missouri

Lawmakers in the Show-Me State are reconsidering sports betting measures this current legislative session despite previous failed attempts over the last decade.

Earlier this year, Rep. Crystal Quade emerged as a primary sponsor of House Bill 2835, which has been introduced as a piece of legislation that authorizes online and retail sports betting and interactive digital games that are played on mechanical amusement devices.

HB 2835 proposes sports betting for Missouri residents and visitors 21 years or older. Operators that are awarded wagering licenses in the state are required to pay a 10% tax on adjusted gross receipts with the majority of proceeds allocated toward public education.

Missouri is also able to generate revenue from its licensing fees, which cost operators an initial $150,000 to submit an application. Under HB 2835, renewal fees for sportsbooks after one year do not exceed $350,000. Gambling boats are also included in the measure with the gaming facilities required to pay up to $100,000 for an initial license application.

Gambling boats will pay no more than $50,000 after one year to renew their licenses.

HB 2835 was introduced in February before being referred to the House Special Committee on Innovation and Technology in April where a public hearing was completed.

Supporters of expanded regulated wagering in Missouri are hoping Winning for Missouri Education’s commitment to sports betting will garner support ahead of November.

“And I know our sports teams, I’m in the Kansas City area and certainly those in the St. Louis area are all advocating for that. So, I think there is the desire, I would never speak for all Missourians but certainly it appears there is a significant number that is supporting that,” Missouri Gaming Commission chairman Jan Zimmerman told KRCG.