May 3, 2022 | Press Release

Broad Coalition of Tribes and Community Leaders Vow to Defeat Deceptive Corporate Online Gambling Proposition Now That Signatures Are Being Submitted

Broad Coalition of Tribes and Community Leaders Vow to Defeat Deceptive Corporate Online Gambling Proposition Now That Signatures Are Being Submitted

For Immediate Release: May 3, 2022
Contact: Kathy Fairbanks, (916) 813-1010

Sacramento, CA – Upon hitting the May 3 deadline for backers of the Corporate Online Gambling Proposition to submit signatures to qualify their measure for the November 2022 ballot, California Indian tribes, public safety, business, social justice leaders, and advocates for the homeless reiterated their strong opposition to this deceptive and dangerous measure that is currently polling well under 50 percent among California voters.

These members of the Coalition for Safe, Responsible Gaming said they would run a comprehensive campaign to educate the voters and defeat this deceptive proposition.

“The Corporate Online Gambling Proposition would legalize online and mobile sports gambling – turning virtually every cell phone, laptop, tablet, and gaming console into a gambling device, increasing the risks of underage and problem gambling,” said Tribal Chairman Cody Martinez, Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation. “We will run a vigorous campaign against this measure and are confident the voters will see through the deceptive promises being made by these out-of-state gambling corporations.”

“At the same time, we’re confident voters will support the Tribal Sports Wagering Act, which will allow in-person sports betting at highly regulated tribal casinos and licensed horse racing tracks in California,” said Tribal Chairman Kenneth Kahn, Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians. “It represents a responsible, incremental approach to allowing sports wagering in California without the risks of opening up every connected device to online gambling.” 

Paul Boden, Executive Director of the Western Region Advocacy Project, a statewide alliance committed to ending poverty and homelessness, said: “As we so clearly learned with the State Lottery and our public schools, it’s simply bad public policy to attempt to fund homelessness and mental health programs with promises of a small piece of the online gambling corporations’ profits. Unhoused Californians need help, but this is not the right way to do it. We’ve heard these empty promises before.”

David Leonhardi, President of the Deputy Sheriff’s Association of San Diego County: “Online and mobile gambling are especially attractive to youth, and the Corporate Online Gambling Proposition lacks critical safeguards to prevent underage gambling, exposing our kids to increased risks of addiction and problem gambling.”

“Our support of the Tribal Sports Wagering Act is consistent with our long-standing support for disenfranchised communities to become self-sufficient,” said Rick L. Callender, President of the California Hawaii State Conference of the NAACP. “Accordingly, the CA/HI NAACP has grave concerns about the impacts that a massive expansion of online and mobile gambling would have on problem gambling in California—particularly among youth and communities of color.”

“This November ballot has the potential to greatly impact the progress California tribes have made toward self-sufficiency in the last two decades. Time and again, California voters have stood with Indian tribes to support gaming on tribal lands while rejecting initiatives that would hurt tribes,” said Vice-Chairwoman Beth Glasco, Barona Band of Mission Indians. “We’re confident that the voters will once again stand with us in allowing sports wagering on tribal lands, and against a massive expansion of online and mobile gambling controlled by out-of-state gambling corporations.”

After counties verify the number of valid signatures, the California Secretary of State has until June 30, 2022, to declare the measure eligible and certify it for the November 2022 ballot.