Governor Roy Cooper

  • North Carolina Tribal Gaming Compacts that include legal sportsbooks have been signed, sealed, and delivered to Washington, DC.
  • After a 45-day window period in the nation’s capital, North Carolina will be able to launch its two retail sports wagering venues.
  • North Carolina sports betting was legalized in July 2019 and will now come to fruition in early 2021.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – North Carolina residents are closer than ever to seeing legal sportsbooks in the state as Governor Roy Cooper signed the Tribal Gaming Compacts that will allow it.

The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI) have been patiently waiting for the Governor to sign off on their new compacts that include legal sports betting since October 2019.

By law, Cooper had until April to approve or deny the terms that were set but it took until the beginning of December to receive his approval because of the Coronavirus Pandemic, and a week after his approval, he’s signed his name to the new documents.

Along with the Governor, making the compacts official required the signatures of Secretary of State Elaine Marshall and Attorney General Josh Stein who have also signed off on the agreement which will now be sent to Washington, DC where it will go to the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Indian Affairs.

The newly signed compacts will be given a 45-day period for public opinion before being enacted. Given the timeframe, this could give North Carolina sportsbooks the chance to be open in time for Super Bowl 55 on February 7, 2021.

What To Expect From North Carolina Sports Betting

Although it’s highly possible for the two Harrah’s locations in the state to open up sports wagering venues for the Super Bowl, it may be delayed because of the new President taking office during the 45-day window in Washington.

However, the EBCI has assured the public if such a delay were to occur that sports betting would definitely be available by March 2021 for March Madness wagers if the event is held this year. It was canceled in 2020 due to COVID-19.

Caesars Entertainment will head up the sportsbooks for the two venues that will be strictly retail-based.

No mobile gambling on sporting events has been legalized in the Tar Heel State under the current law for sports betting. Not only will the people of North Carolina be able to gamble on sports, but they will also be able to place wagers on horse races as stated within the compacts.

However, sports bettors must be at least 21 years old to participate in any of these activities.

Onward And Upward

After becoming a legal industry in July 2019, North Carolina will be getting sports betting almost 18 months later. Harrah’s has been patiently waiting for the state to approve their new Tribal Gaming Compacts and have been ready to launch for over a year.

Now, as soon as the window in DC ends, assuming there are no bumps in the road as far as opinions are concerned on the current drafts, sportsbooks can open at the two Harrah’s locations in the state in early 2021.

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