D.C. officials proposed a $215 million contract this week to manage online gambling and the lottery in a deal that would benefit companies connected to some city officials.
According to plans first obtained by The Washington Post, seven companies will share up to $116 million dollars as part of no-bid contracts to be awarded by Intralot, the firm hired by the city to run the sports betting system.
Mark Jones, a former official of the D.C. Lottery, is involved with the contract through his firm M. Jones Companies.
Everett Hamilton, who managed communications for Mayor Muriel Bowser’s first run as mayor and is now CEO at Octane, is a subcontractor through Octane.
D.C. Council member for Ward 3 Mary Cheh said, “The whole thing is beginning to — as far as I’m concerned — have a smell about it.”
Cheh and her colleagues will have to approve the plan in coming weeks, but Cheh said, “I’m poised to vote against this contract.”
WTOP has reached out to Intralot and Bowser’s office for comment.
WTOP’s Mike Murillo contributed to this report.
Editor’s Note: A previous version of this story stated that five of the seven companies had no prior experience in sports betting, based on a previous version of The Washington Post’s story.