Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts

  • Gov. Pete Ricketts officially signed the bills that will bring regulated sports betting and casino gambling to the state of Nebraska.
  • The bill currently limits betting to in-person locations only and does not allow wagers to be placed on in-state college teams like the Nebraska Cornhuskers.

LINCOLN, Neb. – Nebraska is officially all set to become the newest state to offer regulated sports betting.

On Wednesday, NE Governor Pete Ricketts signed the bill that will allow for Nebraska bettors to wager on sports in-person at sportsbook locations.

The move comes long after the voters of Nebraska approved the ballot proposals back in November of 2020, and will make Nebraska the next sports betting destination of the Midwest.

The bill in question is LB 561 which renames and changes the powers of the State Racing Commission to the new State Racing and Gaming Commission in order to oversee the sports betting industry.

Nebraska will now allow for existing tribal casinos, racinos, and horse racetracks to apply for licenses to offer legal sports betting.

The goal for the state is to have sports betting up and running at these locations by the end of 2021.

“When Nebraska voters overwhelmingly approved the ballot proposals in November, they provided the legislature with a mandate,” said bill supporter Senator Tom Briese in a statement. “That mandate is they want casinos at racetracks, and the property tax relief they will provide.”

In doing so, they approved all games of chance, including sports betting and other such games, as a matter of law I introduced LB 561 to clarify what the voters approved, and provide some parameters that are both consistent with what the voters mandated and consistent with Nebraska values.

One of the only drawbacks of the new bill is that Nebraska sportsbooks will not be able to offer betting on in-state college teams like the Nebraska Cornhuskers.

That means no bets on Scott Frost’s Husker football team in the immediate future under the “college carveout” rule intended to discourage corruption.

For those looking to bet on the Huskers in Nebraska, they will have to use a licensed online sportsbook, or travel across state lines to Iowa.

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