gambling

TOPEKA, Kansas — Kansans thinking about wagering a few bucks on the Kansas City Chiefs’ Super Bowl appearance this weekend would have to go to one of 14 states to do it legally.

But by later this year, sports betting could be legal in Kansas. This year’s bill is a compromise — allowing people over 21 to gamble on sports through the companies that run the state-owned casinos and via online apps. And it has some critical support.

KMUW/File photo

There won’t be a revote on allowing slot machines at Wichita Greyhound Park in Sedgwick County anytime soon.

Mike Rastiello / flickr, Creative Commons

A prominent Wichita businessman pleaded guilty Tuesday to a federal charge related to illegal gambling activities.

In the waning days of the 2019 session, the conservative Republicans controlling the Kansas Legislature made one thing clear to Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly and her allies: They were ready for a fight against Medicaid expansion.  

The issue commanded the four-month session, which ended in the wee hours Sunday. The session was the first with the new Democratic governor in office, which gave people who wanted to expand health coverage for thousands of low-income Kansans the energy to push hard in the final days. Their efforts ultimately failed.

 


Legalizing sports gambling in Kansas seemed like a safe bet earlier this year. It’s a new source of tax dollars and enjoys bipartisan support.

Mike Rastiello / flickr, Creative Commons

A former Kansas Highway Patrol trooper has been given probation for lying to the FBI during an investigation into illegal gambling in Wichita.

The U.S. Attorney’s office said Monday that Michael Frederiksen of Derby was filmed taking part in an illegal poker game in Old Town in 2014. He was interviewed by the FBI in 2017 as part of a wider probe investigating gambling businesses in Wichita.

Frederiksen was convicted last year on one count of making false statements to FBI investigators. He was sentenced to one year of probation on Monday.

Stephen Koranda / KPR/File photo

Kansans could be placing legal bets on their favorite sports teams next year.

A legislative committee met Tuesday to discuss options for sports gaming. Many states are eyeing the tax money they could gather now that a federal ban on sports betting has been knocked down.

Lawmakers on the committee believe it’s likely that Kansas will legalize sports gaming. The question is what it might look like, and how much it’s taxed.

Republican Sen. Bud Estes said the state must be careful to avoid too many taxes.

KMUW/File photo

A former Wichita police officer pleaded guilty Wednesday for not reporting information about illegal poker games, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s office.

The release said Bruce Mackey of Goddard pleaded guilty to one count of misprision — or concealment — of a felony. Mackey, 46, admitted that while he was a police officer, he knew and did not report individuals who were conducting a gambling business, the release said.

Sentencing is set for Oct. 26. He faces a penalty of up to three years in federal prison and a fine up to $250,000.

A new report finds legalizing sports gambling could boost revenue for states like Kansas, but any windfall is likely to be brief.

Sports gambling began to tempt lawmakers after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling legalized it earlier this year. The report released Thursday from the Pew Charitable Trusts said sports book likely won’t be a magic pill to cure state budget issues.

Marit & Toomas Hinnosaar / flickr, Creative Commons

March madness has many Kansans filling out their NCAA brackets. Kansas lawmakers are considering legislation that could tap into that market by legalizing sports gambling in the state.

A bill before the House Federal and State Affairs Committee would allow sports betting through the Kansas Lottery. At least one major professional league says it wants some input on the rules and a cut of the winnings.

Pages