Gov. Nixon signs law to regulate daily fantasy sports games

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri is one of the latest states to enact legislation to legalize and regulate daily fantasy sports games.

Gov. Jay Nixon on Friday signed a law that gives the state Gaming Commission oversight of the practice and require licensing fees. It takes effect in August.

Websites such as DraftKings and FanDuel will need to pay an annual operation fee of 11.5 percent of net revenues to operate in Missouri. Businesses also must pay an annual licensing fee of $10,000 or 10 percent of net revenue, whichever is lower.

The games will be limited to those at least 18 years old.

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Missouri joins six other states in passing legislation to allow the games.

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News release from Governor's Office:

Keeping a commitment made in his State of the State address this past January, Gov. Jay Nixon today signed House Bill 1941, the Missouri Fantasy Sports Consumer Protection Act, into law. The Act establishes a number of consumer protection measures and creates a regulatory framework for fantasy sports contests in Missouri.

“When a new frontier of online betting is available at the touch of a screen, we have a responsibility to protect consumers and young people,” Gov. Nixon said. “I appreciate the General Assembly for answering my call to bring forward common-sense consumer protection to make sure fantasy sports gaming in Missouri is operated responsibly and with accountability.”

Under the Missouri Fantasy Sports Consumer Protection Act, the Missouri Gaming Commission will exercise broad regulatory authority over the operators of fantasy sports sites. This authority will include the ability for the Commission to investigate and license operators, as well as take action against operators who violate the Act.

To pay for the investigation and licensing of operators, the Commission will collect an application fee of $10,000 or 10 percent of the fantasy sports operator’s net revenue from Missouri participants for the previous year, whichever is less. In addition to the application fee, licensed operators will be required to pay an annual operation fee of 11.5 percent of its net revenue from Missouri participants for the previous year. The revenue collected from the operation fee will be deposited into the Gaming Proceeds for Education Fund.

The Missouri Fantasy Sports Consumer Protection Act provides numerous consumer protections, including prohibiting employees of fantasy sport companies from playing in contests offered to the public. Other consumer protections include:

-- Prohibiting contests based on college, high school and youth sports;
-- Mandating participant funds be segregated from operating funds and preventing unauthorized withdrawals;
-- Prohibiting participants under the age of 18 and requiring operators to have age-verification procedures;
-- Ensuring that prizes are deposited into a participant’s account within 48 hours;
-- Establishing complaint procedures;
-- Requiring licensed operators to develop and maintain online self-exclusion forms and processes;
-- Imposing advertising restrictions on licensed operators, including restrictions on advertisements targeting those less than 18 years of age, those who have self-excluded themselves, and those on the Commission’s voluntary exclusion list and disassociated persons list;
-- Prohibiting licensed operators from issuing credit to participant s and prohibiting an individual participant from opening multiple accounts;
-- Regulating the use of scripts; and
-- Requiring licensed operators to conduct and pay for annual independent financial audits to ensure compliance with the act.