- Georgia and Kentucky have filed bills to legalize sports betting in 2021.
- Connecticut, New Hampshire, South Dakota, Virginia, and Washington all have proposals about their legal sports wagering markets to be heard in the current or upcoming legislative sessions.
- Governors in Arizona and Ohio are betting that legal sportsbooks will be coming to their states this year.
- New York and New Jersey have posted records for handle and revenue from their sports wagering markets for December 2020.
- FuboTV hopes to launch its own sportsbook by the end of 2021 after acquiring Vigtory, an internet gaming platform.
ATLANTA – Sports betting revenue, bills to legalize sportsbooks, and expansions of markets are just some of the things that have occurred in the past week for the sports wagering industry across the country.
Georgia and Kentucky have both filed bills to legalize sports wagering for 2021 in their states.
Connecticut, New Hampshire, South Dakota, Virginia, and Washington all have bills connected to their sports betting markets to either expand or suppress their industries. Each of these pieces of legislation should be heard in the 2021 session of each state.
Governors from Arizona and Ohio are advocating for a legal sports betting market in their states, citing revenue and the fact that residents already gamble on sporting events with or without a state-sanctioned market in place. On the revenue end, New York and New Jersey have both posted monthly records for revenue and handle for the month of December.
And FuboTV has acquired Vigtory, a gambling platform that they hope to launch as their first sportsbook endeavor in the United States by the end of 2021.
Georgia And Kentucky Going For Sports Betting Legalization In 2021
The state of Georgia wants to legalize sports betting through the Georgia Lottery to avoid having to deal with a constitutional amendment among other things that could be bypassed going this route. House Bill 570 would legalize internet and mobile sportsbooks via the lottery in the Peach State.
State legislators would like to see the proper approvals for it to become law during the 2021 General Assembly. All profits from a legal sports wagering industry in Georgia would go to the HOPE Scholarship and Pre-K school programs that will see budget cuts due to the financial problems caused by COVID-19.
Representative Adam Koenig from Kentucky will be seeking to make sports betting legal in the Bluegrass State in 2021 as he’s tried to do in previous sessions. House Bill 241 would give Kentucky legal sports betting but it is unclear whether the proposal will get a proper amount of time on the floor during the shortened session.
At the moment, it is rumored that Historical Horse Racing (HHR) will be the focus of gaming for the upcoming hearings, leaving any bills for legal sports betting to be heard in 2022.
States Trying To Expand Their Legal Sports Wagering Industries
New Hampshire already has a legal sports betting market in the state but it prohibits live in-game betting at retail sportsbooks. Mobile and internet platforms are allowed to offer this sports betting type to their gamblers.
House Bill 330 that is being introduced in the 2021 session would give land-based venues the opportunity to offer live in-game wagering to their customers. Lawmakers in favor of the legislation say that it makes no sense to deny establishments from offering this bet as patrons can access their mobile applications while on the grounds and place that type of wager anyway.
In Connecticut, it looks like 2021 will be the year that the state sees sports wagering made into a legal market. This would also include a mobile and online aspect via Senate Bill 146. Governor Ned Lamont is advocating for the legalization of gambling on sporting events and with DraftKings already partnered with Foxwoods Resort Casino, a stamp of approval for the bill to become law seems forthcoming.
Virginia legalized sportsbooks in 2020 with the law allowing for 14 separate internet licenses to be given out to various operators. The problem with the current cap is that 25 different operators applied for licensure. Now Virginia would like to raise the cap in 2021 through House Bill 1847. This would give the Old Dominion an even more competitive market with more platforms for sports bettors in the state to use when gambling on sporting events.
Senate Bill 44 in South Dakota would cease an expansion of the newly legal sports wagering market in Deadwood and keep it strictly in Deadwood. Sportsbooks became legal in South Dakota for the town of Deadwood in the November 2020 vote.
It was the hope of constituents that this would open the door to statewide mobile platforms in the future. However, the latest legislation to be heard by the South Dakota Legislature would not allow for this to happen should it pass.
The state of Washington has not yet launched their legal sports wagering industry and already a new bill for the 2021 session has come to light that would expand upon it.
Senate Bill 5212 wants to have racetracks and cardrooms in the state become eligible to open sportsbooks in addition to the already legal tribal gaming establishments. There is no word yet on how this will sit with the Legislature as it’s a topic that’s spilling over from the previous session that was ultimately shot down before the bill became law.
More Governors Are Backing Legal Sports Betting
Arizona Governor Doug Ducey would like to see legal sports betting come to Arizona in 2021. Tribal Gaming Compacts in the state are set to expire leading to renegotiations that could include sports wagering.
Governor Ducey has a vision for an all-encompassing sports betting industry that has both collegiate and professional sporting events included. The Arizona Legislature will be the deciding factor in how they choose to proceed, either lifting the current gambling bans to allow for legal sportsbooks or keep them in place.
Gambling on sporting events in Ohio got very close in the 2020 session to becoming a legal market. Governor Mike DeWine believes that sports betting in Ohio will be legalized in 2021. With the Coronavirus Pandemic causing major gaps in the budget, new revenue streams like sports wagering are welcomed.
And if money from a sports betting market could help the education system in Ohio with its funding rather than have them see budget cuts, why wouldn’t the Ohio Legislature legalize a pastime already occurring?
New Jersey And New York Sports Betting Markets Set New Records
New York had a major surge in revenue from their sports betting market from a year-on-year look. December 2019 brought in a revenue of $710,418 for NY while December 2020 saw $2.3 million in revenue from sportsbooks. That’s a 210.6% jump year-on-year in profits made.
In total, over the last nine months of the current fiscal year, the Empire State has seen a total combined revenue of $8.8 million from its land-based only sports wagering industry and that’s with months of mandatory shutdowns happening within that timeframe due to COVID-19.
New Jersey is growing closer and closer to surpassing that billion-dollar handle threshold for sportsbooks in the state with $996.3 million wagered in December. Not only is that a record handle for the Garden State but they also made a record for monthly revenue with $66.4 million.
As the New Jersey sports betting industry continues to grow, it’s likely that January will post new records in both areas, one of which will see handle cross the billion-dollar line with postseason NFL games being in full swing for gambling action.
FuboTV Plans To Launch Sportsbook By End Of 2021 With Acquisition Of Vigtory
FuboTV continues to delve deeper and deeper into the sports betting industry, opting to launch a full-fledged sportsbook by the end of the year. FuboTV just purchased Vigtory, an internet gaming application. This deal should be finalized by the end of the first quarter of 2021.
After that, it is expected that FuboTV will begin to take steps to roll out a sports betting platform in the United States with a timeline for a launch slated to be at the end of 2021.
Michigan will be launching their online sportsbook on Friday. An announcement was made by the Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB) on Tuesday that will allow officially licensed operators to begin to roll out their platforms. FanDuel and DraftKings will be among the first to launch their mobile sportsbooks on Friday while a few others will have to wait until Saturday.
The Presidential Inauguration is scheduled for January 20. Political betting lines and odds for the event are posted on sportsbooks. A number of bets for the inauguration of Joe Biden taking office as President of the United States are available for gamblers interested in wagering on politics.
More sports betting bills to legalize the pastime are expected to be seen by a variety of other states in the country as more than half of the U.S. already have legal sports wagering industries. With the Coronavirus Pandemic causing huge financial burdens to the economies of states everywhere, legal sports betting seems like a sound source of new revenue as it’s something that Americans nationwide engage in.
Minnesota, a state that a largely against gambling of any kind without plenty of discussions, has a bill coming out later in the week that would make betting on sporting events legal in the state if passed by the Legislature during the 2021 session.
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Christina has been writing for as long as she can remember and does dedicated research on the newly regulated sports betting market. She comes from a family of sports lovers that engage in friendly bets from time to time. During the winter months, you can find Christina baking cookies and beating the entire staff at Mario Kart…the N64 version of course.