Bipartisan Support in the Texas Legislature to Affirm the Legality of Fantasy Sports
Sen. Kolkhorst and Rep. Raymond File Companion Bills to Protect Texans’ Right to Play Fantasy Sports Games
AUSTIN, TX – Senator Lois Kolkhorst (R-Brenham) and Representative Richard Peña Raymond (D-Laredo) today filed SB-731 and HB-1544 to confirm the legality of fantasy sports in Texas. More than five million Texans play fantasy sports, a contest of skill that gives fans the opportunity to engage with professional sports while competing against their family and friends. The Texas Fantasy Sports Alliance (TFSA) applauds Sen. Kolkhorst and Rep. Raymond for championing common-sense legislation to protect fantasy sports in Texas.
Scott Dunaway, the spokesman for TFSA, said, “We are encouraged by this bipartisan effort to confirm the legality of fantasy sports in Texas, a long-standing tradition in our state. We look forward to working alongside the legislature, Texas fantasy sports players and Texas-based businesses supporting this industry to help pass this free market legislation.”
“This bill is about protecting individual freedoms and limited government. Our state must create legal clarification for the millions of Texans who enjoy playing fantasy sports every day with friends and family,” said Senator Kolkhorst. “Texans enjoy their liberty and rights as much as watching their favorite sports team, and that’s why the legislature should work together to pass SB 731 this session.”
“The time has come for the Texas Legislature to protect personal freedom and confirm the legality of fantasy sports, a decades-old past time in our state,” said Representative Raymond. “This effort has seen tremendous support in previous sessions that affirms what we already know, fantasy sports are a game of skill.”
Approximately 57 million Americans play fantasy sports. Forty-one states and the District of Columbia allow paid entry contests, and 19 states have enacted laws confirming the legality of fantasy sports. According to The Nielsen Company, three of the top 10 fantasy sports markets in the country are in Texas (Dallas-Fort Worth, Austin, and El Paso). More than a dozen fantasy-sports related businesses are headquartered in our state.