Senate panel endorses asking voters to allow sports betting

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - A South Dakota Senate panel has approved a measure that would ask voters to legalize sports betting in historic Deadwood.

The Senate State Affairs Committee voted 5-4 on Wednesday to send Senate Joint Resolution 2
to the full chamber. Republican Sen. Bob Ewing, the sponsor, says lawmakers should allow South Dakota residents to decide the issue.

The push comes after the U.S. Supreme Court cleared the way last year for all states to offer legal sports betting.

Deadwood Gaming Association Executive Director Mike Rodman says sports betting would be a marketing opportunity to boost the city's less-busy seasons. Revenue Department Deputy Secretary David Wiest opposed the measure, saying regulation costs would exceed revenues generated.

The constitutional amendment would allow the Legislature to authorize wagering in Deadwood and at tribal casinos.