Related video above: Online sports betting returns on limited basis in Florida
TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — The Florida Supreme Court has declined to block sports betting in the state while legal challenges play out in court.
The Florida Supreme Court denied the request from West Flagler Associates on Friday without explanation.
“The ‘Motion to Expedite Consideration of Request for All Writs Relief Pending Resolution of Petition for Writ of Quo Warranto and Suspend the Sports Betting Provisions Contained in §§ 285.710(13)(B)(7) & 849.142, Fla. Stat.’ is hereby denied,” according to the filing.
After the Seminole Tribe announced its mobile sports betting app would return, West Flagler Associates asked the court to “immediately suspend the off-reservation sports betting provisions in the Implementing Law that purport to authorize the Tribe to conduct sports betting statewide,” and to maintain the status quo of “no sports betting statewide” until a ruling is made in the existing court cases.
West Flagler argued that the Seminole Tribe “exceeded their constitutional authority in enacting legislation expanding casino gambling in this state without a citizen’s approval,” according to the filing.
Seminole Tribe announced earlier this month that in-person sports betting would return to its casinos in December after the U.S. Supreme Court declined to block a compact — a $2.5 billion deal between the tribe and the state — which would allow sports betting in Florida.
The compact allowed mobile sports betting as long as the computer servers hosting the betting were located on tribal land. The existing legal challenges surround whether or not the mobile app violates the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act and the Florida Constitution.
Two brick-and-mortar casinos — Magic City Casino and Bonita Springs Poker Room — sued over approval of the compact, stating it would hurt their businesses by giving “an Indian tribe a statewide monopoly to conduct online sports gaming while simultaneously making such conduct a felony if done by anyone of a different race, ancestry, ethnicity or national origin.”