DENVER (CBS4) – A bill to regulate fantasy sports websites like DraftKings and FanDuel is a step closer to becoming law in Colorado. It passed a key committee with help from former Denver Broncos wide receiver Brandon Stokley.
Stokley says he and his son are big fans of fantasy sports. In fact, he says they help build fan support for real sports teams like the Broncos. Stokley was among those who showed up to testify in favor of a bill that would establish the Colorado Office of Fantasy Sports to draft rules and license operators.
In Colorado, an estimated 800,000 people play fantasy sports on a regular basis.
Supporters of the bill say it legitimizes the websites, which some states have banned calling it illegal gambling. But opponents say there’s no indication fantasy sports was in danger of being banned in Colorado. They say the regulation is unnecessary.
“I find it frustrating that somehow we’re being asked to pass this bill to prevent the attorney general from doing something there’s no indication she has any intention to do,” said Sen. Chris Holbert, R-Parker. “In fact, I’ve reached out to ask and the answer has been, ‘no.'”
“I’ve had more fans come up to me after my successful seasons congratulating me for helping their fantasy sports leagues than for helping my team win football games, so it just shows the value of fantasy sports in our culture,” Stokley said.
The Fantasy Sports Trade Association supports the legislation, which is headed to the full Senate. It’s already passed the House.