Maine Bills Would Legalize Sports Betting

The Maine legislature is mulling several bills to legalize sports book. The different bills take varying approaches to legalization. Senate President Troy Jackson (l.) wants to emphasize a strong regulatory structure. One would benefit casinos. Another would benefit tribes. One would allow online wagering.

Workers at New Atlantic City Casinos Looking to Unionize

Workers at the newly opened Hard Rock Atlantic City and Ocean Resort casino are exploring unionizing with UNITE Here Local 54, Atlantic City’s largest casino workers union. The union has been recognized as the bargaining agent for workers at the Hard Rock property (l.). Ocean Resort workers are still in the process of authorizing a bargaining agent.

Two Bills Would Relocate Indiana License

Two bills in the Indiana legislature would allow the Majestic Star (l.) in Gary to move inland and its second license could be relocated, possibly to Terre Haute. State Senator Eddie Melton’s legislation also would require the second-license casino to pay 20 percent of the adjusted gross to Gary for 20 years—regardless of its location.

Kentucky Lawmakers File Sports Betting Bill

HB 12, filed by Kentucky state Reps. Al Gentry and Dennis Keene (l.), would allow sports betting and authorize the Kentucky Lottery Corporation to regulate it. The bill permits betting on professional and collegiate sports, but does not address the tax rate or application fees, or whether sports wagering would be limited to in-person betting.

Harrah’s Philadelphia Opens Sports Book

Harrah’s Philadelphia Casino and Racetrack has opened its sports book, becoming the fourth casino sports book in Pennsylvania and the fifth book overall. The opening follows the debut of the first sports book outside a casino at the South Philadelphia Turf Club a week earlier.

Massachusetts Governor Proposes Sports Betting Bill

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker has decided to get into the act of proposing a bill to the legislature. He has sent over a bill to legalize sports betting. But his bill has competition, as there are two other sports betting bills before the legislature.

Virginia Casino Bill Passes Committee

A Virginia Senate committee passed a bill sponsored by state Senator L. Louis Lucas (l.) authorizing Portsmouth, Bristol and Danville to apply for casino licenses; Pamunkey tribal casinos also could operate in Norfolk and Richmond. All five cities would be required to hold local referendums, and casino gaming net earnings would be taxed at 10 percent. The bill moved to the Senate Finance Committee.

Ho Dynasty Extended

Macau gaming magnate Stanley Ho has 17 children. Two of them seem to have inherited his business acumen. Daughter Pansy Ho has just assumed control of Macau casino operator SJM Holdings Ltd., founded by Stanley. Brother and fellow billionaire Lawrence Ho operates Melco Entertainment and is determined to win one of the first three integrated resort licenses in Japan.

Hedge Funds Circling MGM

Activist investors are making their presence felt on the gaming giant MGM Resorts, which has agreed to add hedge fund boss Keith Meister (l.) to the board of directors. Meister used to work for Carl Icahn and has a history of pushing changes on his investments. A second hedge fund is also increasing its position in MGM.

DraftKings Faces Lawsuit Over Tournament in New Jersey

DraftKings is facing a class-action lawsuit in New Jersey seeking refunds for players in its Sports Betting National Championship, which was marred by a timing issue that blocked many players from making bets on an NFL playoff game. The suit seeks refunds of the $10,000 entry fee and damages. The suit was filed in New Jersey Superior Court on behalf of participant Christopher Leong of New York.