- Arkansas could see mobile sportsbooks in 2021 with House Bill 1942 that was introduced on Monday.
- The Arkansas Legislature has a little over a week to get this new bill passed.
- With a drop in sports betting activity through the state’s three retail locations, Arkansas is desperate to expand its market to create more of a revenue stream.
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A new sports betting bill to regulate mobile sportsbooks in Arkansas was introduced on Monday, even with the Arkansas State Legislature adjourning on April 30 for the year. This gives the new proposal ten days to get through both chambers and onto the desk of Governor Asa Hutchinson which is a monumental task to achieve in such a short time frame.
Gambling expansions typically require plenty of time for discussions that the legislature does not have going into this new bill. House Bill 1942 would open online and mobile sports betting operations in Arkansas. Currently, the state has a retail-only sports betting industry.
House Bill 1942 Set To Modernize Sports Wagering In Arkansas
Arkansas sports betting has three locations in the state where tourists and residents can lay down action on sporting events. However, House Bill 1942 wants to catapult the industry into the 21st century with the addition of online and mobile options for gambling on sporting events.
The Arkansas Racing Commission (ARC) has approved the plan for internet and mobile sportsbooks via this bill proposal. They have a system ready to go that would be the foundation for this form of wagering on sports. Gamblers in the state could access sports betting operations through desktop computers or any mobile device with internet capabilities statewide.
Rules and regulations for the expansion would be done through the ARC. Those eligible for licenses would be the casinos that are already venues for sports gaming. However, they would be able to receive three skins for mobile sports betting, making for a total of nine platforms at the moment with the three current establishments open. Remote registration will be available through this measure, allowing for the utmost convenience to get more players in on the games.
Regulated sports betting in Arkansas would also open collegiate betting along with the mobile aspect through House Bill 1942. This would be huge for the state as they’re home to a number of college teams, including the Arkansas Razorbacks, and fans that want to wager on their sports matchups. But there are still only ten days left in the session to get this bill passed this year.
The Coming Days
Lawmakers in Arkansas want to see the new proposal come to fruition. The sports betting market in the state has dropped in handle and activity as can be seen within the last few reports. Having a mobile outlet for sports bettors would allow more people to engage in the pastime and get more handle and revenue into Arkansas’ economy.
Wednesday will see the first hearing of House Bill 1942 in the House Select Committee on Rules. The hearing starts at 1:00 p.m. EST. By that time, there will be nine days left in the session to pass this bill. The clock is ticking in the Arkansas State Legislature to regulate mobile sports betting in 2021 but they may just be able to get it done this year.
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.