In late April, the Massachusetts Senate passed a sports betting bill by voice vote. Facing criticism about the lack of transparency in voice votes, which do not show the public how individual legislators vote, Senate President Karen Spilka said. Boston Public Radio Friday he would have voted yes if the vote was a roll call.
Spilka assured on Friday that the final vote would be a roll call.
“It’s no secret, I’m not a fan of gambling,” Spilka said, referring to his vote against the casino law in 2010. “I would have voted yes to this particular bill based on [these] very strong consumer protection features. ”
Spilka pointed to parts of the bill that require 9% of revenue to go to addiction treatment resources, bans on credit card use for betting and advertising restrictions as conditions that led to his support.
The House also approved a version of the sports betting bill in April. Next, the House and Senate will reconcile any differences before a final vote – differences that may be particularly relevant if college sports betting becomes legal.
The Senate President also discussed the $ 50 million Senate budget plan released Tuesday, which includes funding for early education, child care, opioid addiction treatment, mental health care, scholars of higher education and so on. The budget also allocates $ 2 million for reproductive health care and rights.
He explained that there is much more to come in the commonwealth’s abortion protection, following the leaked draft decision of the Supreme Court to reject. Roe vs. Wade which was first reported by POLITICO.
“We looked at the language, worked with the maternity advocates, worked with the attorney general on what else we needed to do,” he said. “We’re looking at other legislative options. Once again, it’s all too early, but I expect we have a lot more to do.”
The Senate will begin debating the budget on May 24.