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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Fantasy sports bill faces long odds in state Legislature



TALLAHASSEE - The odds have gotten worse for a bill in the Florida Legislature to declare betting through fantasy sports is legal as a game of skill, instead of wagering.

Key state senators say they are increasingly hesitant to make any moves affecting the status of daily fantasy sports games because the state is in the middle of complex negotiations with both the Seminole Tribe of Florida and parimutuel wagering companies over what forms of gambling should be allowed.

In the past two weeks, both the Tribe and lobbyists for horse racing and dog tracks have become increasingly vocal in objecting to daily fantasy sports as a form of gambling that affects their businesses. That has caused some legislators to proceed cautiously with a bill introduced in the House and Senate to legalize fantasy sports.

"It is now part of the overall gaming conversation," said State Sen. Rob Bradley, a north Florida Republican who is the Senate's lead negotiator on a new gaming deal with the Seminole Tribe. "You can't talk about fantasy sports in a vacuum.

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[Last modified: Friday, January 15, 2016 6:42pm]


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