Online sports betting

  • Elissa Silverman filed the Sports Wagering and Fair Competition Amendment Act of 2022.
  • This measure would add Class C sportsbook licenses for mobile operators.
  • This removes Intralot’s online sports betting monopoly and increases the tax rate to 15%.

WASHINGTON – Councilmember Elissa Silverman filed a bill Monday to shake up DC sports betting.

Currently using GambetDC as the sole online operator, Silverman hopes to change this. With the goal to end the contract with Intralot by 2024, the measure would look to add competition in the DC market.

This comes as the GambetDC sports betting app has failed to meet expectations. Aside from betting outages, the app is actually losing money.

Expected to gross $25 million over its first year, GambetDC actually lost $4 million.

“If we’re going to have a lottery and a sports betting program in the city, then it needs to generate revenue, because I want to pay for important programs and public education, public safety and affordable housing,” said Silverman.

How It All Works

If approved, the measure add a Class C sportsbook category. This would allow legal sportsbooks to apply for a license. Class A is for stadiums while Class B is for geofenced books.

“It removes the monopoly and exclusivity of the D.C. Lottery’s gambling app, GambetDC, and creates a sports betting license for the private market apps…”

Bidding on future contract would be a requirement under the bill. Besides that, if GambetDC doesn’t make money, it calls for them ceasing operations.

At time of writing, estimates put the sports betting app providing $1.5 million to the District.

The DC Council approved the Intralot no-bid contract in 2018 worth $215 million. GambetDC, under Intralot, then launched in spring of 2020.

When all said and done, the measure would bump the sports betting tax rate from 10% to 15% as well. This would put DC sports betting on par with neighboring Virginia and Maryland.

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