Connecticut operator: tribes are “roadblock” to sports betting

Sportech operates 14 OTB facilities at bars and restaurants and is pushing for legalisation of sports betting.
Sportech operates 14 OTB facilities at bars and restaurants and is pushing for legalisation of sports betting.

Ted Taylor, President of Sportech Venues in Connecticut, is pushing for legalisation of sports betting in the state.

US.- Ted Taylor, president of off-track betting operator Sportech Venues in Connecticut, has said tribes are currently a “roadblock” to legal sports betting in the state.

Taylor’s comments were published in an opinion article, in a bid to persuade legislators to allow Sportech, the Connecticut Lottery Corp and the tribes to provide sports betting within Connecticut.

The tribal owners of Foxwoods Resort Casino and Mohegan Sun argue that they have exclusive rights to sports betting within the state.

Before the pandemic outbreak, state governor Led Lamont was in favour of tribes providing sports betting at casino and OTB sites, but opposed to tribes providing online sports betting.

In a legislative session set to take place next month, most observers believe it is unlikely that sports betting will come up, but Taylor’s article serves as an attempt to draw attention to the issue.

He argues: “The clear solution is for the state to break the stalemate and license the state’s existing gaming operators, including the Tribes.”

“The arguments for exclusivity made by the Tribes are groundless and the clear path is to provide existing gaming operators – including the Tribes, Sportech and the Lottery – the opportunity to offer their Sports Betting products to consumers before Connecticut loses the game for not fielding a team.”

Sportech is a division of a UK-based company, and operates 14 OTB facilities in bars and restaurants in Connecticut.

Back in April, Gov. Lamont said he will not take a unilateral decision on whether to legalise online casino in the state, after receiving letters from Foxwoods Resorts Casinos and Mohegan Sun.