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Maricopa County Judge Denies Yavapai-Prescott Tribe’s Attempt To Delay Online Sportsbooks’ Thursday Launch

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A Maricopa County Superior Court Judge has denied an attempt by the Yavapai-Prescott Tribe’s to delay the launch of online sportsbooks in Arizona on Thursday. The tribe filed a lawsuit last week against Governor Doug Ducey and Arizona Department of Gaming Director Tod Vogt, alleging state lawmakers illegally passed the state’s new sports betting, event wagering bill in April. The tribe’s attorneys claim the passage of the law violates the state’s Voter Protection Act, as it permits non-tribal gaming operators to gamble outside tribal land. They say it also distorts the purpose of Proposition 202, passed in 2002, which authorizes tribes in the state to operate limited forms of gambling in tribal-owned casinos and only voters can decide on whether to expand types of gambling offered in the state. The tribe says recently-passed House Bill 2772 was unconstitutional. The judge says the tribe arguments weren’t likely to succeed, so he denied the motion. The tribe owns and operates Yavapai and Bucky’s casinos and was one of two tribes not to have signed new gaming compacts with the state. The tribe is expected to appeal the decision.