LETTER: Sports betting offers benefits

March 19, 2019

A 2018 U.S. Supreme Court decision struck down the 1992 federal Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, or Bradley Act, through which most states, including Iowa, were prohibited from the establishment of sports wagering.

The major argument for legal sports betting is that if not regulated by legislature and government, people will resort to illegal gambling.

The subject is on the minds of Iowans because of House File 648, which seeks to legalize, regulate and tax sports betting. One could say it’s pertinent with the people of Sioux City with the major presence of the Hard Rock casino in the middle of the downtown area.

The tax revenue from sports betting could be used for pressing problems in Iowa like underfunded K-12 schools, could prevent the passing of a plastic bottle tax, and could improve water quality. Passing the bill would also mean curtailing the corruption many people experience due to illegal betting activities, with the introduction of regulated institutions and legal bookies. - Connor Mahoney, Sioux City