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Indiana lawmakers to hold summer session on sports betting

(Indiana Statehouse Newsroom)- In just a matter of weeks, lawmakers will gather at the Statehouse to talk about sports betting.

This comes after the US Supreme Court lifted the ban across the nation.

Republican State Representative Alan Morrison from Brazil, Indiana told us he championed legal sports betting in Indiana for years. He has tried several bills in years past.

State Rep. Alan Morrison told us Monday, "Ultimately, I think it's a great thing for our gaming industry and at the end of the day, it's a win for states' rights."  

His new plan is to create a bill that helps iron out the kinks of how it would work.

State Rep. Alan Morrison explained, "We have 13 casinos or racinos, boats. We have a handful of off-track betting facilities. Those would be the facilities that we would allow." 

Monday, New Jersey's Governor signed legislation allowing sports betting. Michigan is also considering it.

"If we implement it correctly, and do some things we need to, I imagine it will mean multiple tens of millions of dollars back to the state every year," Morrison explained. 

Christina Gray, Executive Director of the Indiana Council on Problem Gambling said Monday, "We think it's going to open the door to a lot of possible issues with people having problems with gambling." 

Christina Gray is Executive Director of Indiana's Council on Problem Gambling.

Gray said, "If they decide to allow sports betting, we would like to see an increase for those who may have a problem [with] gambling. For treatment, also maybe some more funds to help us get the word out about problem gambling." 

Indiana's House Democratic Leader, Terry Goodin from Austin told us he's ready to talk about it.

House Democratic Leader. Terry Goodin  explained, "If we do that, if we have a good strong civil debate, I think we can come up with a good solution. I don't think any one person or one group can come up with the solution. I think the solution needs to be a mix of ideas and thoughts from everyone involved in the process."

Morrison said if things progress like he'd like, we could see sports betting in Indiana by Summer 2019.

If you or someone you know needs help with a gambling addiction, click here for the Indiana problem gambling hotline.

For resources from the State of Indiana, click here or here.

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(This story was originally published on June 11, 2018)

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