Sen. Tom Briese (R-Albion) introduced two bills, one that would regulate the state’s future casinos and the other to allow sports betting at those casinos.
Sen. Briese was a longtime opponent of gaming but said he changed his mind after this past election, when Nebraska voters overwhelmingly supported a trio of ballots allowing casino-style gaming at the state’s six racinos.
“Here in November the voters spoke and they spoke loud and clear,” Sen. Briese told LOLN in Lincoln.
The local news station reports that Briese’s bills would push for online and mobile gaming and sports betting.
Briese wants online and mobile gaming to take place inside licensed gaming facilities, which would ostensibly include the half-dozen racinos as well as a future Lincoln casino proposed by Warhorse Gaming, a subsidiary of the Winnebago Tribe's Ho-Chunk Inc.
The Warhorse property would become the first casino in Nebraska.
Sen. Brett Lindstrom (R-Omaha) has proposed a resolution that would put sports betting on the ballot in 2022 if the legislation does not legalize the activity sooner.
Lindstrom indicated that it’s only a matter of time before Nebraska legalizes sports betting, whether through the state house or the ballot box.
“It’s being done, it’s just the state is losing out on what could help offset some tax reform,” Sen. Lindstrom told LOLN.