• Rhode Island House Finance Committee Passes Sports Betting Bill To Full House Vote
  • The Bill Is Sponsored By R.I. Speaker Of The House, Nicholas Mattiello

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Those who are tired of waiting in line to indulge in Rhode Island sports betting might not have to wait much longer to start wagering from their mobile device. This week, the House Finance Committee approved mobile sports betting bill, passing it to a full house vote.

The bill, formally known as RI HB 5241 would allow the two existing land-based sportsbooks at the Twin River locations to host servers at their properties.

This would enable them to offer a mobile sports betting app that would be available to anyone physically located within the state’s borders. Although, you would still have to register in-person to use any legal online sportsbook in R.I.

The new initiative comes from the overwhelming influx of local sports bettors and those traveling to the state. It also comes with a much-needed additional revenue stream.

According to Rhode Island Lottery figures, as of January 31, the Twin River books have only been able to keep $1.19 million in sports betting revenue. The state collected 51 percent of that amount through taxes and the same would apply if mobile sports wagering were granted to those casinos.

“The new in-person sportsbook that opened in November has been very popular, with lines sometimes stretching out the doors,” said R.I. Senate President Dominick Ruggerio.

The Senate passed RI SB 37, an identical mobile sports betting bill just last month. Ruggerio sponsored the bill in his legislative chamber, the same way that Speaker of the House Nicholas Mattiello has.

The full House will vote on the initiative next week, and if passed once more, it will land on Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo’s desk and require her signature for it to become law. Raimondo’s proposed FY 2019 budget includes $3 million in tax revenue from mobile sports betting alone.

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