New York Legislators Reach Agreement on DFS

New York state legislators say they have reached an agreement on new daily fantasy sports legislation in the state.

Senator John J. Bonacic, who heads the state Senate Committee on Racing, Gaming and Wagering, said, “We have an agreed-upon bill,” according to the New York Times. The legislation would still need to be passed by both houses of the legislature and signed by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo.

Cuomo’s office told the paper that negotiations were continuing.

Separate bills on DFS have advanced through committees in both houses of the state legislature, but the bills contained several differences.

Under the deal outlined by Bonacic, DFS companies would pay a $150,000 fee to operate in New York, or 1.5 percent of the previous year’s revenues, and turn over 15 percent of revenues to the state after prizes were awarded to players. The games would be classified as games of skill, the Times said.

New York has been the site of the most contentious battle over the legality of daily fantasy sports. The state’s Attorney General Eric Schneiderman sued to block the sites from operating in the state, saying they are illegal under state law. His move was tied to an unprecedented advertising blitz at the start of the NFL season last year by the two biggest DFS sites, FanDuel and DraftKings.

The two sites later agreed to stop taking entries from New York while the legislator worked on a DFS bill. That deal expired June 30, however, and without legislation, will see the two sides likely back in court.

Bonacic, a Hudson Valley Republican, said legislation is now within reach and could generate $3.5 million to $5 million a year for the state. Bonacic also told the Times that Cuomo’s office still needed to weigh in with “technical amendments” to the bill, but said he expects the measure to pass.