California Sports Betting Vote: Tribal Perspective


The vote on California Sports Betting is just weeks away, and fear is growing that both ballot propositions on the matter will fail. We speak to James Siva, Chairman of the California Nations Indian Gaming Association, about both California sports betting propositions on the ballot. Discussion includes the benefits and detriments of each on the Tribal Gaming business in the state. Mr. Siva is also of the Vice Chairman for the Morongo Band of Mission Indians in Cabazon, California.

The vote on California sports betting is just weeks away, with two propositions competing to legalize sports betting in the state for the first time. The activity could be legalized if either of the new propositions receive more than 50% of the vote.But what happens if they both get over 50%? And what happens if neither get enough votes?

Proposition 26: Most of California’s tribes back this initiative, which would allow their casinos, along with horse racetracks, to offer sports bets to their customers. The terms of Proposition 26 would not allow online sports betting, dealing a major blow to operators such as DraftKings and FanDuel. Their is a 10% tax on revenue with this Proposition, with funds set aside for problem gambling programs, regulation and enforcement, and the state’s General Fund.

Proposition 27: The big operators such as DraftKings, FanDuel have sponsored Prop 27, which would allow mobile sportsbook from private sportsbook companies who partner with a California tribal gaming for mobile sports betting. State residents could then download sportsbook apps and bet from their homes. This Initiative also has a 10% tax betting revenue to fund problem gambling programs and gambling regulation enforcement, but also includes money for homelessness programs, and California tribal development programs for non-gaming tribes.