Monday August 1,2016 : MASSACHUSETTS DFS BILL PASSED IN LATE NIGHT SESSION? (Update)

Last flurry passage late into Sunday night as two-year session closes.

Initial reports suggest that the Massachusetts legislature, in the wrap-up of its two year session which moved late into the night Sunday, has passed major bill H4569, an economic package that includes daily fantasy sports.

The bill allows for the temporary operation of daily fantasy sports in the state until July 31, 2018 on condition that it operates in “accordance with regulations promulgated by the Attorney General” Maura Healey laid out earlier this year (see previous InfoPowa reports).  It removes DFS, for the time being, from the definition of gambling.

The legalization also covers the creation of a commission that is tasked to review a broad range of topics under the DFS and internet gambling sectors, co-chaired by the House and Senate chairs of the Joint Committee on Economic Development and Emerging Technologies.  Others members will include appointees from the speaker of the House, the president of the Senate, the Attorney General and the Massachusetts Gaming Commission. 

The commission is expected to file a comprehensive report along with any recommendations for legislative and tax reforms no later than March 31, 2017.  

The enactment of the bill will be particularly gratifying to daily fantasy sports operator DraftKings who call Massachusetts its home state.  Massachusetts will become the eighth state to green light daily fantasy sports this year along with Tennessee, Virginia, Missouri, Indiana, Colorado and Mississippi.

The bill has reportedly been laid before the Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker and awaits his signature.