Support for HB 333 “slipping back and forth” – expected to be first on Wednesday’s agenda
Delaware’s Senate has delayed a crucial vote on a bill authorising online gambling in the state.
HB 333, a bill which would permit the sale of online lottery tickets, allow residents to play online casino games and expand gambling beyond the state’s three casinos, was scheduled for a vote on Tuesday.
A source close to the matter said the Senate broke for caucus prior to a vote yesterday due to further discussions needed around amendments in the latest draft of the bill. These include provisions to satisfy the state’s horse racing business, which has asked for a greater share in the profits from online gaming.
The bill is now expected to be first on today’s agenda and will need to be signed by Governor Jack Markell by the 30 June legislative deadline in order to pass into law.
According to local news source Delaware Online, Senate Majority Leader Patricia Blevins said support for the gambling expansion was “slipping back and forth” and Democratic leaders “wanted to be certain where we stood.”
A spokesman for Governor Markell, who is understood to be in support of the bill, was reported as saying: “Members of the administration were working with senators and others on an amendment that was of concern, and while progress was made and the sponsor agreed not to run it, given the late hour Senate leadership decided the bill will be worked first on the agenda on Wednesday instead.”
The bill, sponsored by Representative John Viola, passed out of the state Senate earlier this month.