HomeIllinois Sports Betting NewsIllinois House Representative Drafts Bill to Bar Dave & Buster’s Gambling

Illinois House Representative Drafts Bill to Bar Dave & Buster’s Gambling

When the Supreme Court repealed the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 in 2018, it was impossible for the justices or anyone in the country to fully predict the lasting ramifications of their decision. Quickly following the legalization of sports betting at the federal level, various states worked within their governing bodies to litigate gambling in their respective territories.

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While many of the states are still weighing the pros and cons of sports betting and have yet to fully legalize the activity, some unexpected ramifications have already sprung up in the states that have already brought gambling inside their borders. For example, the state of Illinois, which already has regulations on IL sports betting, has made a major move to counter Dave & Buster’s recent new development.

Dave & Buster’s bold new direction

Earlier this year, the popular adult arcade franchise Dave & Buster’s announced that they planned on jumping on the new betting wave in the United States. The company revealed its plans to allow wagering on its arcade games in the future. After all, with the spread of sports betting across the country, new avenues have opened up in various adjacent industries as a result. Daily Fantasy Sports, casino gaming, and sweepstakes gaming are just some of the peripheral markets that have benefitted from the legalization and subsequent growth of sports betting in the U.S.

Dave & Buster’s latest decision is a prime example of an indirect benefactor looking to capitalize on the surging interest in gambling and gaming as a whole. Unfortunately for Dave & Buster’s, their plans were met with significant pushback from the onset and the company’s new direction could become a prime example of the downsides of unfettered growth from the gambling industry.

Mike Mazzeo, author for Legal Sports Report, tweeted out the following message on April 30: “A spokesperson for the Ohio Casino Control Commission told LSR it has “serious concerns” that the proposal for Dave & Busters to allow customers to bet on arcade games “appears to violate Ohio law.”

Pushback across the country

Ohio isn’t the only state to express concern in Dave & Buster’s latest venture. On Thursday, May 2, Illinois House Representative Dan Didech introduced a bill that would create the Family Amusement Wagering Prohibition Act. This measure would prevent businesses such as Dave & Buster’s from promoting and handling wagers on their games.

Didech had this to say following Dave & Buster’s announced partnership with Lucra to facilitate future wagers on its games:

“When the press reports came out earlier this week that Dave & Busters was in partnership to begin unregulated and unlicensed gambling games on-premise, that raises a whole host of issues of if it’s possible in a way we consider safe and responsible.”

Didech’s proposed Family Amusement Wagering Prohibition Act had over 25 cosponsors. The state’s legislative bodies will have until May 24 to sign Didech’s House Bill 5832 into law before their current session closes. Philadelphia lawmakers are also scrutinizing Dave & Buster’s decision, and its potential effects. This won’t likely be the last time that an outside market tries to infuse gambling into its services.