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SDPB Radio Coverage of the South Dakota Legislature. See all coverage and find links to audio and video streams live from the Capitol at www.sdpb.org/statehouse

House Defeats Video Lottery Bill

The maximum bet limit for video lottery remains unchanged after the South Dakota House of Representatives defeated House Bill 1246. The bill attempted to raise the video lottery bet limit from the current two dollars to five dollars.

Republican State Representative Dick Werner is a sponsor of House Bill 1246. He says video lottery has not been changed in the state since its creation, so an improvement is necessary.

"Video Lottery is a mature industry in our state. Few changes have been made to the program since it was started. It is a highly regulated industry in which good rules have been established and enforced in the market place," Werner says.

Werner's goal to increase the maximum limit of awards from $1000 to $2500 dollars failed. Most of the opposition to the bill comes from lawmakers who say video lottery destroys the lives of South Dakotans. Republican State Representative Scott Ecklund spoke against the bill.

"I’ve had wives kick their husbands out and the husbands living in homeless shelters because of the addiction that happened from video lottery. I’ve had divorces in my practice, due to the state legalizing this problem," Ecklund says.

This bill was defeated by a vote of 40 to 28.

Nate Wek is currently the sports content producer and sports and rec beat reporter for South Dakota Public Broadcasting. He is a graduate of South Dakota State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism Broadcasting and a minor in Leadership. From 2010-2013 Nate was the Director of Gameday Media for the Sioux Falls Storm (Indoor Football League) football team. He also spent 2012 and 2013 as the News and Sports Director of KSDJ Radio in Brookings, SD. Nate, his wife Sarah, and two kids Braxan and Jordy, live in Canton, SD.