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South Dakota voters to decide on Deadwood sports betting

March 3, 2020 GMT

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — South Dakota voters will decide whether to allow sports betting in Deadwood after the House on Tuesday passed a proposal to put the question on the November ballot.

The proposal requires a change to the state constitution, meaning it must go before voters. The Senate already passed the resolution. Tribal casinos would also be allowed to offer sports betting if the measure passes.

In 2014, 57 percent of voters passed an amendment that made it possible for keno, craps, and roulette to be played in Deadwood. Neighboring states like Iowa have rolled out sports betting after the Supreme Court paved the way for legal wagering two years ago. South Dakota lawmakers in favor of the proposal argued that it was time to get in on the action.

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Legislators pointed out that gambling in Deadwood brings in tax revenue that gets distributed across the state through the general fund and grants for historical preservation.

Opponents said they were worried about expanding gambling in the state. Gov. Kristi Noem opposed a similar proposal last year.

“We’ve been on this journey where we’ve just embraced gambling,” said Rep. John Mills, a Volga Republican. “I just wonder when is it going to end?”