Yesterday, the Governor of Virginia signed a bill into law that will see the licensing and regulation of daily fantasy sports within the state. Governor Terry McAuliffe made quick work of signing the bill which had just passed through the House and Senate just last month.
The bill, titled the Fantasy Contests Act, will work to establish a legal framework for the fantasy sports industry that operates in Virginia. Several consumer protections are included to provide safety for individuals who choose to take part in the DFS contests.
The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services will be overseeing the industry as companies that offer DFS and season-long contests will have to register with the state to take part. A licensing fee of $50,000 will have to be paid, a fee that will cover the cost of oversight, with no tax set for the gaming revenues.
The governor has had the legislation in hand since late February as the House and Senate passed the legislation during the same month. The House voted 80 to 20 in approval of the measure while the Senate saw a vote of 31 to 9 in favor. The measure has moved very fast through legislator to have been introduced in just January.
Senator Ryan McDougle is the sponsor of the legislation who stated that the signing signified an important day for the future of fantasy sports. McDougle stated that Virginia is now leading the way in establishing strong consumer protections while sending a clear message that playing fantasy sports is a skill-based hobby that players should be able to enjoy with the proper oversight.
The legislation states that players who take part in DFS must be 18 years of age or older. Confidential information on the contests cannot be shared with third parties by the operators that could affect the games until the information has been publicly introduced. Funds of players must also be placed in a separate account from the operational funds of the DFS Company. Employees of DFS sites are also not allowed to compete and firms must have an audit take place twice a year by an independent company that will confirm the operator is abiding by all regulations.
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