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FanDuel calls on Florida fans to support fantasy sports

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FanDuel, the national fantasy sports website, has sent a “call to action” email to its Florida users, asking them to contact lawmakers in support of their hobby. “With the Big Game just around the corner, we have an important message to share with every Florida fantasy sports player,” the email says. “A new bill has been introduced that would update Florida’s laws to recognize what we all know to be true—that fantasy sports are games of skill and should be…

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Daily fantasy sports rivals DraftKings and FanDuel to merge

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Daily fantasy sports rivals DraftKings and FanDuel have agreed to merge after months of speculation and increasing regulatory scrutiny. The two companies made the announcement Friday, saying the combined organization would be able to reduce costs as they work to become profitable and battle with regulators across the country to remain legal. Florida struggled with fantasy sports last legislative session, ultimately letting die a measure that would have explicitly legalized online fantasy play. A 2006 federal law banned online gambling but…

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Virginia is 1st state to legalize, regulate fantasy sports

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Virginia has become the first state with a law regulating the fast-growing but embattled online fantasy sports industry and specifying that fantasy sports betting is not “illegal gambling.” Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe signed a bill Monday that formally legalizes and regulates sites such as FanDuel and DraftKings, requiring them to pay a $50,000 initial registration fee and submit to regular outside audits. The law will take effect July 1. McAuliffe said in a written statement it will “empower Virginia to…

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State legislatures see flurry of daily fantasy sports bills

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The daily fantasy sports debate has spilled into state capitols nationwide, with nearly 30 legislatures including Arizona’s considering proposals to regulate, ban or affirm the games played by millions of Americans. The flurry of recent legislative activity represents a sea change for the industry, which for years was content to operate largely unregulated. “We’ve been operating in this gray area for a long time, and, up until now, it hasn’t really been a problem,” said Peter Schoenke, chairman of the…

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No contest: Push to legalize fantasy sports in Florida fails

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Florida legislators are rejecting, for now, a push to make fantasy sports legal in the state. Rep. Matt Gaetz, a Destin Republican, made a last ditch effort on Friday to keep a fantasy sports bill alive in the final days of the 2016 session. But he dropped the effort after getting resistance from some other Republicans. Legislators this year proposed bills that would have covered both season-long fantasy leagues, as well as daily fantasy leagues. Florida’s attorney general back in…

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Fantasy sports bill fumbles in Florida House

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A legislative leader ultimately backed down Friday on his attempt to tack language legalizing fantasy sports play in Florida on a regulatory-related bill. State Rep. Matt Gaetz, the Fort Walton Beach Republican who chairs the Finance and Tax Committee, tried to amend a House bill (HB 1187) making changes to the state’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation, which also regulates gambling. Gaetz’s amendment mirrored a Senate measure backed by President-designate Joe Negron that declares fantasy sports play a “game of…

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Fantasy sports language in gambling bill because of Rick Scott, lawmakers say

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One mystery was solved after a House panel cleared the latest version of this Session’s gambling legislation: state Rep. Jose Felix Diaz said language on fantasy sports play was inserted into his chamber’s bill because Gov. Rick Scott wanted it there. Diaz, a Miami Republican, spoke to reporters Monday after the Finance and Tax Committee OK’d on a 12-5 vote the House’s 2016 gambling bill (HB 7109). The bill is a rewrite of the proposed gambling compact between the state and the Seminole Tribe of Florida.…

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