Colorado Gambling Contributes Over $11 Million To Water Plan

Written By Adam Hensley on 09/26/2022 - Last Updated on September 30, 2022
Gambling in Colorado provided over $11 million to the Colorado Water Plan

Tax revenue from gambling in Colorado is up in its second fiscal year. And the Colorado Water Plan remains a major beneficiary.

On Sept. 15, the Colorado Limited Gaming Control Commission approved tax revenue distribution from the fiscal year 2022. Revenue totaled $12,445,447.97, and $12,236,517.05 went toward intended beneficiaries, according to a Colorado Department of Revenue release.

The Colorado Water Plan received $11,359,790.17. That’s a 43% increase from the previous fiscal year’s amount of $7,945,934.29.

Overall, the Colorado sports betting fund distribution increased by nearly $5 million in Fiscal Year 2022 compared to the Fiscal Year 2021 ($8,564,616.03).

Net Sports Betting Proceeds reported Colorado’s tax revenues. The Net Sports Betting Proceeds calculation is the total of all wagers placed – not including free bets – minus the payments to players and federal excise taxes.

Who else received tax funds from Colorado gambling?

The Hold Harmless Fund grabbed $746,726.88 of the tax revenue.

$130,000 went to the Office of Behavior Health. Of that amount, $30,000 goes to support operations of a problem gambling hotline. And $100,000 goes toward other problem gambling services.

What does the Colorado Water Plan do?

Firstly, when it came to Colorado’s legalization of gambling, the tax revenue plan was a major selling point. Proposition DD, the Legalized Sports Betting with Tax Revenue for Water Projects Measure, went into effect in 2019.

It created a 10% tax on sports betting profits. Money allocated to the Colorado Water Plan helps fund:

  • New water supply storage
  • Raw water supply
  • Water conservation
  • Various agricultural projects

Projects range from long-term conservation strategies to educational efforts and more.

The Colorado Water Plan first came to fruition in 2015.  The plan gets help from the Colorado Water Conservation Board, which “creates and manages the Plan’s framework and supports the state’s water community with funding and technical resources to implement programs and projects,” according to its website.

An updated 2023 version of the Colorado Water Plan is set to release in early 2023. According to its website, the Colorado Water Plan’s 2023 vision focuses on:

  • Vibrant communities
  • Robust agriculture
  • Thriving watershed
  • Resilient planning

Rockies star Blackmon an advocate for Colorado Water Plan

Charlie Blackmon, an outfielder for the Colorado Rockies, has a partnership with MaximBet. In turn, Blackmon advocates for the good sports betting taxes can do: The Colorado Water Plan.

Accordingly, Blackmon is a big outdoorsman, so it’s no surprise he’s a proponent for Colorado’s sports betting tax use. On his Instagram, the baseball player posted photos of himself fishing, hauling in marlin, tarpon and more.

“Hey everybody, important reminder from my friends @maximbetusa and @water4colorado,” Blackmon tweeted earlier this summer.

“Taxes from sports betting fund CO’s Water Plan – projects that protect and conserve rivers, farming & drinking water. Go to engagecwcb.org to share what you think should be in the plan!”

Photo by AP Photo/Brittany Peterson
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Adam Hensley

Adam Hensley is a journalist from Des Moines, Iowa, who currently works for the USA Today Network. His byline has appeared in the Associated Press, Sports Illustrated and sites within the USA Today Network. Hensley graduated from the University of Iowa in 2019 and spent his college career working for the Daily Iowan’s sports department, both as an editor and reporter.

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