PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — South Dakota Commission on Gaming members and staff listened Wednesday to a state government official explain what’s ahead for sports wagering at Deadwood casinos.

The commission also agreed to push back the dates to the first weekend of October for horse races at Fort Pierre.

South Dakota voters in November amended the state constitution to allow sports wagering in Deadwood.

The Legislature adopted SB 44 that requires sports bettors place their wagers while on the premises of Deadwood casinos.

David Wiest, deputy secretary for the state Department of Revenue, briefed gaming commissioners Wednesday about the process of getting the legislation passed. He also told why two rival measures had to be defeated.

Wiest, speaking at Deadwood city hall with several commissioners participating by teleconference, said the bill as amended by the Senate State Affairs Committee was the version that now awaits approval from Governor Kristi Noem.

“We just wanted to have a good solid system in place,” he said. “We all anticipate the governor signing that bill.” 

Department officials held internal discussions about the architectural structure and possible proposals for rules right after voters passed Amendment B, according to Wiest. He said folks in Deadwood are “anxious” but the department wants to avoid going too fast and making a mistake.

The next steps call for the commission’s executive secretary and her staff to propose rules for the commission to consider at a public hearing, followed by the adoption of those rules and their presentation to the Legislature’s review committee for final scrutiny.

The commission’s next meeting is scheduled for June 16. There wasn’t any discussion Wednesday among commissioners and staff about whether rules would be offered that day. The commission’s four quarterly meetings in 2020 were held in March, June, September and December.

Citizens voted on sports wagering in Deadwood, not statewide, according to Wiest.

That’s why he worked to defeat HB 1211 that would have authorized on-sale liquor license holders to route bets to Deadwood casinos and HB 1231 that would have gone further and allowed mobile betting from anywhere in South Dakota through Deadwood casinos.

“The words of the constitution controlled,” Wiest told commissioners Wednesday. Arguments that technology could make sports wagering available statewide conflicted with the language that voters approved. “Well, the technology does not change the constitution. The words control.”

As for South Dakota’s last live horse-racing meet, the Verendrye Benevolent Association event at the Stanley County Fairgrounds will now be October 2-3, the commission decided. The association originally requested September 25-26.

“After recognizing several arisen conflicts that may not allow our hosted race meet to accomplish its greatest potential we are requesting this amendment,” wrote Shane Kramme, the event’s general manager and the association vice president.