Louisiana Senate Green-Lights 8% Daily Fantasy Sports Tax

  • The final step is for Governor John Bel Edwards to sign House Bill 64 into law
  • All resulting tax revenue will go to the Early Childhood Education Fund in Louisiana
  • 47 parishes across the state will now be able to offer the activity to their residents
  • Players have to be over 21 to be eligible for cash prizes up for grabs in DFS contests
calculator with tax buttons and a US dollar bill in the background
The Senate in Louisiana has approved an 8% state tax rate on revenue from daily fantasy sports contests. [Image: Shutterstock.com]

All in agreement

The Louisiana Senate has approved a bill that sets the tax rate for daily fantasy sports (DFS) in the state at 8%. House Bill 64 (HB 64) got final passage following a 36-0 vote in the Senate on June 23. The House had already voted 82-11 in favor of this bill on June 17, with the Senate Committee on Revenue and Fiscal Affairs giving its approval on June 22. Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards will now need to sign the bill for it to pass into law.

commits the tax proceeds to the Early Childhood Education Fund in Louisiana

The bill will see a state tax of 8% imposed on net revenue from DFS contests. It also defines net revenues and commits the tax proceeds to the Early Childhood Education Fund in Louisiana. Senator Troy Carter said that a lot of people supported HB 64 “specifically because they understand the significance of providing resources to early childhood education.”

The estimated annual tax revenue from the activity is $375,000. The figure is based on a report highlighting DFS tax revenue generated in New York from its 15% tax rate.

A long time coming

In 2018, 47 of Louisiana’s 64 parishes voted in favor of having daily fantasy sports available in the state. It took almost two years for the legislature to set regulations for the activity and for a tax rate to be agreed.

Governor Edwards signed House Bill 357, which establishes fantasy sports regulations, on June 11. The measure had gained approval in the legislature before the normal legislative session ended on June 1. 

the activity would not be allowed unless it was taxed

Following the legalization of fantasy sports in Louisiana, state lawmakers said the activity would not be allowed unless it was taxed. A special legislative session, called to determine budget issues, eventually got the tax rate measure over the line.

Louisiana’s gambling scene

The 47 parishes that had approved daily fantasy sports will soon be able to offer the activity in their area. Residents will have to be at least 21 years old if they want to play for cash prizes. The Louisiana Gaming Control Board will be in charge of issuing licenses to fantasy sports operators such as FanDuel and DraftKings. 

Louisiana residents are also set to vote on whether or not they want legal sports betting. Governor Edwards signed Senate Bill 130 on June 11, allowing each parish to have their say on the issue on the November 3 ballot. 

The casinos in Louisiana were among the first in the country to reopen for business in May following the COVID-19 shutdown. Many states have yet to reopen their gambling establishments in the wake of the pandemic.