North Carolina Senate

  • The North Carolina Senate Committee on Commerce and Insurance approved amendments to a mobile sports betting bill.
  • Amendments to House Bill 347 include an increased tax rate and horse racing.
  • The bill now heads to the Senate Finance Committee for consideration.

RALEIGH, N.C. – The North Carolina Senate Committee on Commerce and Insurance approved amendments for House Bill 347 on Wednesday afternoon. Now, the bill has been referred to the Senate Finance Committee.

Since NC HB 347 received House approval in March and crossed chambers, there hasn’t much discussion surrounding sports betting in committees.

Now that NC HB 347 received a favorable vote on its amendments and will be considered in another committee, legal North Carolina sports betting greatly makes up for lost time before the 2023 legislative session adjourns.

The discussion saw three different representatives of religious groups speak in opposition of the bill, but no nays were received, and it is referred to the Senate Finance Committee.

Approved amendments of the bill include a tax rate increase from 14% to 18% and legalize pari-mutuel wagering on horse racing. Language in the bill would allow for live horse racing and horse racing machines, which were not included in the bill when it passed in the House.

The North Carolina Lottery Commission would issue 10 to 12 sports betting operators. Regulation of professional sports, collegiate sports (including in-state universities), and eSports would occur with House Bill 347’s passage.

A successful vote in the Senate committee doesn’t mean that sports betting becomes legal; however, it does greatly improve North Carolina’s chances to legalize sports betting before the legislative session ends on August 31st.

Democratic Governor Roy Cooper and Republican Senate Leader Phil Berger are both in support of bringing legal sports betting to North Carolina. House Bill 347 could launch North Carolina sports betting in January of 2024 if the bill passes through legislation this session.

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