Almost one year after the Washington Legislature voted to legalize sports betting in the state, the terms for the opening of the first sportsbook in Washington has been agreed upon.
Last Friday, the Tulalip Tribes and the Washington State Gambling Commission reached a temporary agreement that will allow legal Washington sports betting sites at two Tulalip Reservation resorts, per an announcement by the state agency.
The 35-page regulations, limits, and controls will now go through a state and federal approval process before the first ever sports bet can be wagered in the state of Washington. The Committee of state legislature and the Gambling Commission will hold hearings and take public comments this spring. After that, the governor and the tribes will sign off the agreement before it is sent to the U.S. Interior Department for Consideration.
National Sports Betting Brands Are Interested
Under the agreement legal Wasington sports betting will include wagers on the top professional sports leagues, the Olympic games, and other international sporting events. College sports bets will also be allowed except for in-state school games. Unlike neighboring Oregon, no online or mobile gaming options will be allowed outside the walls of the authorized tribal casinos.
National sports betting brands like DraftKings, FanDuel, and William Hill have shown interest in competing for the licenses to operate the sportsbooks at the tribal casinos. This was evident during the hearings, and in their public comments to the state Gambling Commission.
Not the Last Agreement
The Tulalip Tribes own the Tulalip Resort Casino and Quil Ceda Creek Casino, both near I-5 on the reservation. The agreement between the Tulalip Tribes is the first between the state gambling commission and a tribal government but it will most certainly be not the last one.
According to the Gambling Commission, 13 to 14 tribes have expressed their interest in offering legal Washington sports betting at their resorts. According to Legal and Legislative manager Brian Considine of the Washington State Gambling Commission, the announcement of the first ever leal Washington sports betting agreement with the Tulalips would launch a cascade of negotiating rounds with the other tribes who now have a concrete agreement to work from.