• NC SB 154 previously passed through the state Senate in April with 42-7 vote.
  • The bill would only authorize sports wagers to be placed in either of the two tribal casinos in the state.
  • NC SB 574, another gambling-focused bill in the House, would put a North Carolina Gaming Commission in charge of further studying sports wagering in the state.

RALEIGH, N.C. – After months of sitting in a House committee, North Carolina sports betting bill SB 154 has been put on the floor calendar for the chamber’s next session this upcoming Monday, July 15.

The bill previously passed through the State Senate in April with a total vote of 42-7 and it was put on the House floor calendar for this week. However, members were not able to make a vote in time before the House went on recess.

SB 154 would legalize sports betting in North Carolina, however, it will only be allowed in-person at either of the two tribal casinos in the state.

This would give the Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort in Cherokee and Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino & Hotel in Murphy the ability to offer a retail sportsbook.

The bill specifically adds sports betting and horse race wagering as additional games covered under Class III games in the state’s current tribal compact.

This would set the legal age to bet on sports in NC at 21 years old or older. Mobile betting was not included in the bill and there were no provisions against any specific wagering types.

What Are The Chances That The Governor Approves NC Sports Betting?

Gov. Roy Cooper has not shown any indication of whether or not he would sign a sports betting bill quite yet.

It is worth noting that Gov. Cooper did veto the original budget submitted by the House because there was not enough money granted to the expansion of Medicaid and for the increase of teacher salaries.

As far as sports betting revenue is concerned, sports wagering revenue is estimated to generate between $1 million and $1.5 million each year for the state, according to the News and Observer.

A specific tax rate on sports betting revenue was not put inside SB 154 as it was assumed to follow the same rate as other Class III games.

The money currently generated by the Class III gaming is put towards the Indian Gaming Education Revenue Fund. Whether or not additional sports wagering revenue would contribute directly to an increase in teacher salaries is undetermined.

Given the fact that the legislature was originally supposed to adjourn on July 1, the need for extra funds seems to be necessary in order to conclude this session.

NC Sports Betting Study Bill Gets The Go-Ahead

Amendment 1 to SB 574 was passed by the House on Thursday by a floor vote of 105-8. This specific amendment would essentially put all gaming activity in the state under the authorization of one gaming commission.

That commission would then be put in charge of conducting a study to further explore the possible expansion of sports betting throughout the state of North Carolina. That study would need to be filed with the state lottery and the Joint Legislative Oversight Committee by February 15, 2020.

The bill itself was passed by the House by a vote of 87-25 and will now head back to the Senate for concurrence before it can be sent to Gov. Cooper.

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