A third bill on daily fantasy sports has been filed. This one would tax the industry and classify such activity in Missouri as gambling. Senator Scott Sifton (D-Affton) wants to regulate daily fantasy sports like casinos.
“Right now the river boats are regulated and they are taxed. The daily fantasy sports industry is not. All we are doing is extending the existing regime to this new form of entertainment,” said Sifton.
Sifton said he wants to level the playing field between both industries.
“If you’ve got certain kinds of gaming that are taxed at 21% and another form that is not taxed at all, that might create an incentive and distort the free market,” said Sifton.
Sifton’s bill calls for a 21% tax on daily fantasy sports companies and players would have to be at least 21 years old. Tax revenue raised would go to Missouri’s public schools.
“Tax revenues from one ought to be handled the same way as tax revenues from the other. I think it’s really important to keep it that way because if you acknowledge a willingness to potentially direct tax revenues elsewhere, you open Pandora’s box and it becomes a fight over who gets what slice of the pie. It makes it a lot harder to get this done in a way that I think is counter-productive,” said Sifton.
In his State of the State address, Governor Jay Nixon (D) called on state lawmakers to tax and regulate the industry like gambling.
Senator Kurt Schaefer (R-Columbia) and Representative Scott Fitzpatrick (R-Shell Knob) have introduced bills on daily fantasy sports, but neither would tax the industry or classify daily fantasy sports as gambling.