Oklahoma Indian Gaming Association chairman, Matthew Morgan.
- Oklahoma tribes launched a lawsuit against the state over the tribal compact.
- Governor Kevin Stitt offered Oklahoma sports betting in the new compact to end the ongoing lawsuit.
- The tribes in Oklahoma rejected the governor’s offer.
OKLAHOMA CITY – The tribes rejected Governor Kevin Stitt’s offer on Friday that would have allowed them to operate sports betting in Oklahoma.
Since the start of 2020, Oklahoma tribes have been in a lawsuit with the state. The tribes believe that their 15-year gaming compact automatically renewed at the start of the new year. The state of Oklahoma claimed that the compact has expired.
Now the Governor wants the lawsuit to end and make peace with the Oklahoma tribes.
The COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic is causing Gov. Stitt to call for unity in uncertain times. To reform the compact, Gov. Stitt offered the tribes to start legal sports betting in their casinos. The state would collect a 2% fee on sports betting transactions. Oklahoma would also collect a 5% fee on all other gambling revenue. But the tribes are not interested.
“The letter confirms the real intent of Governor Stitt is to destroy the tribal interest outlined in the existing compacts,” said Matthew Morgan, chairman of the Oklahoma Indian Gaming Association. “The tribal leaders who received the letter reject the proposal as disrespectful and disingenuous.”
The tribes are also accusing the governor of using the coronavirus pandemic to divide the tribes in Oklahoma. As a result, the Oklahoma tribes are rejecting the governor’s offer. This means that Oklahoma sports betting will likely not happen anytime soon.
Even if the Oklahoma tribes accepted the offer, they would not have the ability to act upon it at this point in time. The coronavirus pandemic has caused casinos to close all over the country to prevent the spread of the virus. This will likely remain for the upcoming weeks and possibly months to come.
For the time being, it seems that Oklahoma sports betting will not happen. No sports betting bills were created in the state and the tribes have rejected the offer to implement sportsbooks. The state legislature could bring forward a new bill, but the legislature is on recess due to the coronavirus.
Oklahoma sports betting hopefuls will likely need to keep waiting for both parties to resolve the issue of the state’s tribal gaming compact.
Daniel is a writer that enjoys writing to inform readers. When Daniel was writing for The Borgen Project, he liked informing the world about victories in global poverty issues. Daniel is also an avid horse racing fan who has been going to the track with his father for over a decade betting the ponies. When he is not writing about sports betting or at the track, Daniel loves playing video games and watching sports in his spare time.