New Jersey Lawmaker Calls Out ‘Integrity Fee’ Nonsense
New Jersey Assemblyman Ralph Caputo has an excellent, one-word description for the professional sports leagues’ demand for an “integrity fee” from states offering regulated sports betting, “disgraceful.” And with that, Caputo is calling out the leagues for their seemingly hypocritical stance of fighting against regulated sports betting tooth and nail, but demanding a piece of the action now that it’s legal.
The integrity fee is a demand the leagues have been making for a one percent cut of the sports betting action in any state that offers legal sports betting. Whether that one percent comes from the handle (all the money wagered) or the gross revenue is still up for debate. The money would be used by the leagues to monitor unusual betting patterns in search of fraud.
But for Caputo, there is no debate about where the integrity fee is coming from because he’s completely unwilling to pay an integrity fee at all.
Caputo, who has been instrumental in bringing regulated sports betting back to the United States and is working to finalize New Jersey’s sports betting bill at this moment, introduced his bill without said integrity. When approached by a representative of Major League Baseball about the lack of, “tools we need to protect our national pastime,” Caputo reportedly said, “The tool you’re looking for is money. That’s not going to happen.”
Should New Jersey sports betting move forward without integrity fees, the leagues would be hard pressed to force that same demand on other states. Our colleagues at CalvinAyre.com sagely point out that Nevada sportsbooks are not required to pay any fees to the leagues.
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