Final approval by the Senate

Argentina: Santa Fe Province approves online gambling and sports betting

Reading time 1:23 min

The Senate of the Province of Santa Fe sanctioned on Thursday 14 several bills sent by the Executive Power, headed by Governor Maximiliano Pullaro. Among these proposals was the one that regulates the activity of online gambling.

During the Extraordinary Session N° 1 of the 141st Period, presided over by Vice Governor Gisela Scaglia, online gambling was enabled when the Senate accepted the preliminary approval from the Chamber of Deputies, without modifications.

The approved initiative "establishes a regulation for the development and exploitation of the activity of games of chance, sports betting, and sports forecasts, online or with virtual modality, which are carried out through digital, electronic, computerized, telematic, interactive, telecommunication means and platforms, and those to be developed in the future", the Senate stated.

Bill 52.665, promoted by Deputy Fabián Bastía -currently Pullaro's Minister of Government- and introduced by his peer Marcelo González (both from UCR Evolución), was approved by the Chamber of Deputies on Thursday, November 30.

2020 Decree

With a wide majority in the Lower House and unanimity in the Upper House, the new regulation comes to overcome Decree 1451 of November 20, 2020, which, with the signature of then Governor Omar Perotti, enabled online gambling under the idea that it was only a "modality" of an already existing legalization.

Maximiliano Pullaro and Fabián Bastía

During the pandemic, the opposition did not understand it this way since, from their point of view, the powers of the provincial Legislature had been subjugated. Three years ago, Pullaro and Bastía, at that time deputies, initiated a lawsuit against Perotti, which now the online gambling law will probably make the issue become "abstract".

Proposal's update

Although the idea of Bastía and González's project was to correct Perotti's regulation, the initiative has some novelties, such as the authorization of sports betting, the increase of the tax from 10% to 15% of the gross results, and a special containment to the agencies, to whom a part of the benefits will be allocated.

In addition, 50% of the money raised will be allocated to campaigns for the prevention and awareness of compulsive gambling.

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