California Teachers Association Could Deliver Blow to Sports Betting Legislation in California
June 6, 2022
For the first time in more than three years, it looks like sports betting legislation has a real chance of passing in California. With no less than two sports betting initiatives that could end up on the November 2022 ballot, there is a chance that California voters will finally get their chance to weigh in on whether or not they want to wager on sports without having to drive/fly to Nevada.
Unfortunately, there is now a behemoth on the horizon that could bring sports betting legislation to a grinding halt. It turns out the California Teachers Association (CTA) is taking major issue with one of the competing sports betting initiatives, that being The California Solutions to Homelessness & Mental Health Support Act.
Make no mistake about it, the CTA carries a big stick in California politics. When they dump their substantial resources behind a cause, it often moves the needle in the direction that the CTA wants. It’s not that they mind California residents having the right to bet on sports from the comfort of their homes, their objections are a bit more insidious
CTA Not Interested in Sharing the California General Fund
One doesn’t have to dig too deep to get at the primary reason behind the CTA’s decision to fight against The California Solutions to Homelessness & Mental Health Support Act should it even make it to the November ballot. Based on the language of this legislation, the sports betting tax revenue would go into California’s general and subsequently be allocated to the causes mentioned in the title of the act.
For decades, the CTA has battled feverishly against any new law that might direct the start’s general fund to anything other than education. If this was really about the legalization of sports betting in California, the CTA would also be in opposition to the Tribal Sports Betting Act. So far, Union leadership has expressed no opposition to what the state’s Tribes are proposing.
Based on the language of the Tribal Sports Betting Act, which is already on the November ballot, there is no provision for the allocation of sports betting licensing fees and tax revenue to anything other than the general fund. Of course, the CTA has every intention of going after everything from the general fund that they can get their hands on.
Here is what is at risk if the CTA can convince voters to say no to the Homelessness & Mental Health Support Act. Should voters also vote against the Tribal Sports Betting Act, California residents would be denied the right to legally wager on sports in-state for at least two more years.
It’s worth noting that in the last 20 years of elections, the CTA has opposed 64 propositions. The Union’s success rate stands at 65.6%. California sports bettors will be the first to state that it’s hard to beat that kind of odds. Coming out of unwanted school lockdowns due to COVID19, this will be a test of the Union’s current power level.