sports betting

• The Massachusetts Gaming Commission has ordered a study on the potential financial impact of sports betting in Massachusetts.
• The goal is to gather data to present to Massachusetts lawmakers who are opposed to sports betting.
• The study will be conducted by the Social and Economic Impacts of Gambling in Massachusetts (SEIGMA) research team.

BOSTON – While lawmakers continue to fail at bringing sports betting to Massachusetts, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) has taken matters into its own hand.

The MGC has ordered a study to be made on the potential economical impact of legal sports betting should it be regulated in the Bay State.

The Social and Economic Impacts of Gambling in Massachusetts (SEIGMA) research team will be conducting the study and the main sponsor is Mark Vander Linde, the director of research and responsible gaming at the MGC.

Massachusetts Sports Betting Study

The study will look at other states with legal sports betting and how those markets have fared during launch.

Massachusetts is in close proximity to multiple active sports betting markets so it will be easy to see the impact of sports betting in that region.

“An analysis in this area would be done to take a look at, obviously leveraging [a previous National Council on Problem Gambling] study, looking at other data that may exist in other states, looking at how legalization has been rolled out in those states, and combining that would allow us to have a better understanding of the likely impacts of legalization of sports wagering in Massachusetts, should it be legalized, as well as what would be kind of a guiding path towards measures to mitigate that harm,” said Vander Linden.

While the House of Representatives in Massachusetts was in favor of sports betting, the State Senate has not shown the same enthusiasm. The study aims to bring all political branches in one accord for sports betting in Massachusetts.

Even Governor Charlie Baker has publicly been in favor of a betting market, so this study could be the beginning of a legitimate push for a local betting market.

When Will The Study Take Place?

The study is set to begin soon as they want to be able to use the study before the end of the fiscal year on June 30, 2022. The goal is to present sports betting data for the budget.

“I agree with that,” said Vander Linden “If we could push this study to take a front seat for the team, that would be great. I can’t speak for them and how their work is being teed up right now, but I will certainly talk to them about this and express that it’s a priority.”

Other markets have done studies in the past ahead of launching their own sports betting markets. Time will tell how beneficial this Massachusetts study is.

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