COUNCIL BLUFFS, IA (KCTV) — Winky and Dwight Bush have held onto their Iowa tradition for a long time.
They come up every year for their anniversary. This year marks 65 years for them going to their favorite spot, the Horseshoe Casino.
Dwight Bush says the casino gives them free rooms, but they don’t pay for their wagering which mainly revolve around horse racing and betting on the Kansas City Chiefs.
Driving three-and-a-half hours from Emporia, Kansas, is their best bet for sports gambling. That’s because horse and dog racing is no longer apart of casinos in Kansas and Missouri. Sports book betting isn’t legal in either state.
“As many years it took Kansas to get the lottery or the casinos it’ll probably be next coming of whatever before we get sports betting,” Dwight Bush said.
Republican MIssouri Senator Tony Luetkemeyer says they had some conversations that were started last session got a bill to the floor that had sports betting as a component to it. However, it ended up stalling on the floor.
Luetkemeyer believes it’ll be a hot topic in this month’s legislature session.
Meanwhile in Kansas, Democratic State Rep. Stephanie Clayton says she doesn’t foresee them passing anything before the end of the year because they are not in legislative session and are not planning to go into session until January.
Clayton doubts there will be a call for a special session.
Despite the growth of sports book betting nationwide, Kansas and Missouri legislators say they are in no rush.
Clayton says she believes Kansas is taking a more thorough approach which can end up taking more time.
Clayton says Kansas is also waiting to see what Missouri does first. One of the major hold ups in Missouri has been finding ways to provide protection from cheaters.
Luetkemeyer says they want to make sure they have a regulatory framework in place that protects the integrity of the game and consumers who are betting on the games.
Also, Missouri legislators have to determine the best way to repay teams being betted on.
Luetkemeyer says anytime somebody prints a shirt or polo with the Chiefs logo, nobody questions if the Chiefs get a royalty from that. Part of the conversation that’s going on right now is how do they compensate the teams.
It’s not just people living in Kansas or Missouri that are dealing with the sports betting stalemate.
In order for people living in Nebraska to sports bet, they have to cross the Missouri River to Iowa.
“Stop letting Iowa take all our money. We are all coming over here spending our money, and it’s all going to Iowa,” said Kyle Derby of Louisville, Nebraska, who is annoyed sports betting isn’t legalized in his home state.
While surrounding states continue to contemplate implementing sports betting, Iowa casinos are taking advantage.
Horseshoe Casino General Manager Samir Mowad says when the betting is going on it creates an economic boost, and he is excited Iowa was able to figure it out for this football season.
As for the fans, they’ll continue to take advantage, too, whether traveling 10 minutes or three hours.
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