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Bill to Legalize Fantasy Sports Gaming Passes Ohio Senate


A bill to legalize fantasy sports gaming in Ohio will soon be on its way to Gov. John Kasich after passing the Senate by a big margin.

Republican Dave Burke of Marysville spoke for the bill, saying it will legalize and regulate an activity for people who can pick sports winners.

“I don’t consider that gambling; I consider that skill.”

But Republican Bill Coley from the Middletown area in southwest Ohio has wanted more regulations on fantasy gaming, saying he’s not against gambling.

“What I’m against is bad law.”

Coley proposed tacking on a 6 percent tax, but that was defeated. Another Republican lawmaker expressed concern that there was no funding in the bill to fight addiction to online sports gambling.

Karen is a lifelong Ohioan who has served as news director at WCBE-FM, assignment editor/overnight anchor at WBNS-TV, and afternoon drive anchor/assignment editor in WTAM-AM in Cleveland. In addition to her daily reporting for Ohio’s public radio stations, she’s reported for NPR, the BBC, ABC Radio News and other news outlets. She hosts and produces the Statehouse News Bureau’s weekly TV show “The State of Ohio”, which airs on PBS stations statewide. She’s also a frequent guest on WOSU TV’s “Columbus on the Record”, a regular panelist on “The Sound of Ideas” on ideastream in Cleveland, appeared on the inaugural edition of “Face the State” on WBNS-TV and occasionally reports for “PBS Newshour”. She’s often called to moderate debates, including the Columbus Metropolitan Club’s Issue 3/legal marijuana debate and its pre-primary mayoral debate, and the City Club of Cleveland’s US Senate debate in 2012.