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Maine court will not consider constitutionality of tribal gambling

Niji Ng

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Maine court will not consider constitutionality of tribal gambling
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The top state court of Maine has declined to consider the constitutionality of tribal gambling while hearing petition on allowing the Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians to conduct gambling on tribal trust land without state permission.

The court’s brief opinion Tuesday said they don’t consider the issue “of a serious and immediate nature.”

The court clarified that Maine’s House of Representatives failed to file a brief explaining why the court should weigh in.

The Maine House this fall passed tribal Rep. Henry Bear’s order asking the Maine Supreme Judicial Court to decide whether a US Supreme Court decision would allow the Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians to conduct gambling on tribal trust land without state permission.

A 1987 US Supreme Court decision lifted restrictions on tribal casinos. A 1988 federal law allows states to set rules for gambling.

Niji has been in the writing industry for well over a decade or so. He prides himself as one of the few survivors left in the world who have actually mastered the impossible art of copy editing. Niji graduated in Physics and obtained his Master’s degree in Communication and Journalism. He has always interested in sports writing and travel writing. He has written for numerous websites and his in-depth analytical articles top sports magazines like Cricket Today and Sports Today. Besides reporting industry headlines from all around the globe, Niji is also head of the content management team at Impressions Content Management, based in Kerala, India, which offers writing and editing services to clients around the world.

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Gambling in the USA

Delaware igaming industry performs well in January

Niji Ng

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Delaware igaming industry performs well in January
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The Delaware Lottery’s financial results have shown that igaming performed robustly on the financial front in January 2019, by posting a 57.9 per cent increase in revenues year-on-year.

Revenue rose to $279,541 (£217,970/€247,999), showing a 11.2 per cent month-on-month from December last year.

Players wagered $7.4m across the state’s three licensed igaming sites in January 2019, which represented a 65.5 per cent year-on-year advance, but a 27.7 per cent fall from the $10.3m staked in December 2018. Players won a total of $7.2m during the month.

Video lottery accounted for $190,223.44 of total monthly revenue, a 68.0 per cent share, followed by table games, which contributed a further $66,982.14. Poker rake and fees, on the other hand, contributed just $22,335.51.

Player registrations also grew significantly in January, up 117.3 per cent to 578.

The majority of revenue was generated by Dover Downs, which saw its more than double from $48,215.61 in the prior year to $139,816.37, with 233 players registering to play over the month.

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Gambling in the USA

New Hampshire challenges US Department of Justice over online gambling

Niji Ng

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New Hampshire challenges US Department of Justice over online gambling
Photo Source: bingoresourceguide.com
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New Hampshire and the company that supports the state’s iLottery system have sued the U.S. Department of Justice over a legal opinion that could put an end to online gambling and state-run lotteries.

The Justice department issued a legal opinion in November that re-interpreted the federal Wire Act of 1961 to ban interstate wagering. The department had been maintaining that online gambling within states that does not involve sporting events would not violate federal law, but in the November opinion, the officials said the law applies to any form of gambling that crosses state lines.

The New Hampshire Lottery Commission filed a lawsuit in federal court citing that the opinion subjects its employees to prosecution, creates uncertainty about whether it should cease operations and could cost the state more than $90 million a year.

Only a small portion of that total comes from the “iLottery” platform the state launched in September and is expected to bring in $4 to $6 million in the fiscal year that starts in July. But the broadest interpretation of the opinion would prohibit all lottery-related activities that use the internet, Attorney General Gordon MacDonald argued in the complaint. That includes transmission of data to backup servers set up in other states.

“Today New Hampshire is taking action to protect public education,” Gov. Chris Sununu said in a statement. “The opinion by DOJ puts millions of dollars of school funding at risk, and we have a responsibility to stand up for our students.”

“There is no indication in the plain language of (the Wire Act), its structure, its purpose, or its legislative history of an unmistakable Congressional intent to outlaw state-conducted lottery activity,” MacDonald wrote. “If Congress wishes to criminalise the interstate transmissions required to operate state-conducted lotteries, it must do so in clear, unmistakable language. Congress has not done that in the Wire Act. ”

NeoPollard Interactive, which offers support for New Hampshire’s iLottery hardware and software, has also filed a suit.

The company’s attorney, Matthew McGill, called the justice department’s opinion a “lawless act.”

“This opinion would subject to felony prosecution conduct that two court of appeals, including the First Circuit, have said is lawful,” he said in a statement. “This is an outrageous and dangerous usurpation of authority.”

The Department of Justice declined to comment.

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Gambling in the USA

Minnesota mulls legalising tribal sports betting

Niji Ng

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Minnesota mulls legalising tribal sports betting
Photo Source: sportshandle.com
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Minnesota is planning to formulate a new bill for legalising sports betting at tribal casinos in the state.

The new bill, named the new Safe and Regulated Sports Gambling Act of 2019, was introduced by Representative Pat Garofalo. It proposes plans to form the Minnesota Sports Wagering Commission, an authority that will have the powers to regulate the state’s sports betting market.

The bill would allow in-person sports wagering at casinos runs by recognised tribes in Minnesota, while consumers would also be able to place bets via mobile and other electronic devices on-site. The bill stipulates that any mobile app to block access to consumers if they are more than 20ft away from a tribal property.

Consumers can bet on all sports and events authorised by the Commission, including US collegiate sports, but wagering on virtual events would not be permitted.

According to the proposal, the new commission will sanction two types of licenses: a sports pool licence and a mobile and electronic sports pool licence, with casinos permitted to apply for both types of licences. The bill does not set out the cost for either licence.

The bill would also enable casinos to enter into agreements with third parties to manage or operate an on-site sports pool, a mobile and electronic sports pool, or both.

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