Last Updated May 20, 2022, 17:52 PM

Weekly News - 05/12/2021

THIS WEEK IN LEGAL SPORTS BETTING - OHIO SPORTS BETTING MAKES MOVES!

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May 12th, 2021 Weekly Report

As Summer quickly approaches, legal sports betting news in the United States shows no signs of slowing down! Many states are trying to fit proposals into their schedules before the end of their legislative sessions. From Ohio sports betting news to Alabama sports betting, there has been motion all over the country. Keep reading to learn all about the latest sports betting news!

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CONTENTS

STATES MAKING MOVES — OHIO SPORTS BETTING PROGRESS

Ohio sports betting saw some movement this week when the Ohio Senate proposed some sports betting legislation. The proposed legislation from the Senate would allow for forty licenses in total. These would include twenty mobile licenses as well as twenty licenses for retail sportsbooks.

The licenses would be available through an open bid. Also sports pools can be offered by the Ohio Lottery with a fixed $20 buy-in.

However, this piece of legislation does not have any licenses set aside for any of the Ohio state casinos or Ohio state professional teams. A substitute piece of legislation is already assumed to be on the way.

This piece of legislation would clarify that licenses for mobile operators would additionally allow for a retail sportsbook on property. This would mean the mobile licensees would be taking on the risk associated. As of now, it appears that the Ohio House is working on its own sports betting proposal to be revealed in the near future.

The open bid method of determining licenses would give priority to the best, not necessarily the first, bids. This is in contrast to the wording in the current bill, which determines a first come, first serve basis.

WHERE DOES ALABAMA SPORTS BETTING STAND?

There are only a couple days left to pass a package of legislation that would legalize Alabama sports betting. There is one legislative day left in the Alabama legislative session. The package mainly aims to create an Alabama state lottery. Alabama is currently one of only five states that does not have its own state lottery.

But, if the lottery and gaming package is to be discussed on the floor, it must be after a marijuana bill is discussed. If the bill is passed by the House on the last legislative day, it could potentially be an issue on the November 2022 ballot in Alabama. The approval of the people of Alabama is required as the current Alabama state constitution does not allow gambling.

Voters in Alabama have not had the chance to vote on a possible creation of an Alabama state lottery since the year 1999. Alabama’s neighboring states all have state lotteries, so the state misses out on that revenue as citizens flock to nearby states for their lottery tickets.

The legislative package would allow state racetracks to turn into casinos, as well as adding sports betting at the tracks for both retail and mobile. It also has directions for Alabama state Governor Kay Ivey to negotiate a gaming compact with the Poarch Band of Creek Native Americans. Governor Kay Ivey is a supporter of gaming legislation.

DRAFTKINGS MAKES BIG SWINGS

According to a DraftKings Sportsbook earnings call, the sports betting stalwart has elevated its expected revenues for 2021. DraftKings has been spending huge amounts of money, $346 million in the first quarter of the year, with $229 million spent on marketing and sales. But, the company has the money to spend as at the end of the quarter if it had $2.8 billion.

DraftKings also has a new social element that will be added to its platform, which will be launching in the very near future. Users will be able to add friends and follow their bets, plus they will be able to talk about topics related to sports.

ARIZONA SPORTS BETTING GETS STADIUM SPORTSBOOKS

Arizona only recently legalized Arizona sports betting. And, now the state will see stadium sportsbooks. The Arizona Diamondbacks in association with Caesars will be opening a sportsbook at their home stadium, Chase Field. Similarly, The Phoenix Suns Arena will have a sportsbook launched in partnership with the FanDuel Sportsbook.

DraftKings has also announced a retail sportsbook in the state, almost a month ago now. It plans to open an aesthetically significant 19th home experience. This will be at the home for the PGA Tour’s Waste Management Phoenix Open, TPC Scottsdale.

LOUISIANA SPORTS BETTING STILL NEEDS SUPPORT

Many Louisiana voters voted to approve Louisiana sports betting last year, 2020. There are three bills in total that are making their way through the state’s legislative sessions to outline sports betting in the state.

HB 697 outlines several pieces for sports betting in the state. Twenty licenses would be made available for a total of $750,000 paid up front. $500,000 is for the five-year license and $250,000 is for the application. The bill outlines sports betting revenue taxation, which would be 10% for retail as well as 18% for mobile.

It is likely that the sports betting legislation, HB 697 has the support to pass. Additionally, SB 142 as well as SB 202 need to pass in order to launch legal Louisiana sports betting in the state. Back at the ballot box in November 2020, 55 of the 64 parishes in the state voted to legal sports betting.

The bill would also give the state lottery a mobile license. Plus, local restaurants and bars would be able to operate lottery kiosks.

Louisiana sports betting fans hope it launches in the state faster than daily fantasy sports has. Despite being approved by voters in 2018, Daily Fantasy Sports operator applications had not began their accepting process until this past February, in 2021. This is due to a slower than normal legislation process that was needed to launch daily fantasy sports in the state.

VIRGINIA SPORTS BETTING SEES GROWTH

In its second full month since its launch, the Virginia sports betting handle took in more than $300 million. This was most likely helped by March Madness. The total amount taken in was $304.1 million, with adjusted revenue of $13.8 million. College basketball tournaments wagering equaled $83.6 million, which was around 27.5% of the total handle.

WILL WE SEE MAINE SPORTS BETTING ANY TIME SOON?

Right now, there are four sports betting bills that are making the rounds in Maine. Back in 2019, the legislature had passed a Maine sports betting bill that would allow for an open mobile market. It was vetoed by Maine Governor Janet Mills and failed to pass an override vote in the House.

The Maine Legislature began its first special session a few days ago. Two of the bills, LD 1527 and LD 1532, would have mobile licenses untethered from casinos. So, that would create an open mobile market in the state with any US jurisdiction licensed sportsbook able to apply for a license.

But, LD 1404 and LD 1405, would call for every mobile betting license to run through a casino, federally recognized Native American tribe, racetrack, or off-track betting facility. That is really the main difference between the two sets of bills. They are going to a work session that will help determine the best model for the state of Maine.

The bills would outline a 10% tax rate on sports betting revenue for retail sportsbooks. Mobile sportsbooks would be taxed at a rate of 16%. The licenses received would be valid for two years. Retail locations would pay $2,000 per license and mobile operators would pay $20,000.

There would be no betting allowed on in-state collegiate events.

The hope for proponents of Maine sports betting is to bring more tax dollars back into the state. Neighboring state New Hampshire has an easy sports betting model that allows Maine bettors to easily place their bets in New Hampshire. So, Maine is currently missing out on that potential tax revenue.

Written by Allie Nelson, our US Sports Betting Industry Expert. You can learn more about our author's expertise.

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