Reschenthaler proposes bipartisan bill to repeal excise tax on sports bets

A bipartisan bill recently introduced by U.S. Rep. Guy Reschenthaler (R-PA) would repeal a wagering excise tax also known as the handle tax.

“Gaming is a vital economic driver in Pennsylvania, supporting over 33,000 jobs, and this legislation will help pave the way for economic growth and job creation in my district and throughout the nation,” said Rep. Reschenthaler, who on July 24 cosponsored H.R. 7790 with bill sponsor U.S. Rep. Dina Titus (D-NV) to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to repeal the 0.25 percent excise tax placed on all legal sports bets.

“I’m proud to join my Gaming Caucus Co-Chair Rep. Dina Titus to introduce this important legislation that will eliminate an outdated tax and burdensome requirements on the gaming industry,” Rep. Reschenthaler added. “At a time when so many employees in the industry are struggling, this bill ends the counterproductive practice of penalizing employers for creating jobs by eliminating a per-employee tax.”

Currently, certain types of sports betting, such as on horse racing and through state lotteries, are exempt from the handle tax. For businesses that are not exempt, they must pay the excise tax, as well as an annual $50 per-employee tax on those who work in sportsbooks, according to information provided by the congressman’s office.

“Forcing sportsbooks to pay a per-employee tax is the last thing we need when gaming establishments are still making announcements about new rounds of layoffs and furloughs,” said Rep. Titus.

H.R. 7790 has been referred for consideration to the U.S. House Ways and Means Committee.