South Dakota approves sports betting

  • Deadwood, South Dakota will have legal sportsbooks coming in 2021.
  • The amendment to the Constitution passed on November 3 by a majority vote.
  • Tribal casinos will also have the right to open sportsbooks.

DEADWOOD, S.D. – South Dakota voters have spoken and the majority vote went in favor of adding legal sports betting to the town of Deadwood.

This measure is one that will amend the Constitution of the state to now include wagering on sporting events.

Deadwood is the center for legal gambling in the Mount Rushmore State where their casinos will now see expansions with the additions of sportsbooks in 2021.

The What & When For Legal South Dakota Sports Betting

SD Constituents voted for an amendment that has essentially greenlit lawmakers to draw up a structure for sports betting in the state with a set of rules and regulations that will become law.

This will occur when the South Dakota Legislature meets in 2021. The first day of the session is slated to take place on January 12, 2021.

Every aspect of the sportsbook market will be up for discussion. Retail sports wagering is a given that will be done at the commercial and Tribal casinos in the city. But the restrictions and everything else that goes into a sportsbook is an empty chalkboard at the moment.

There is even potential for future mobile sports wagering platforms to become available should government officials agree to such a stipulation in the proposal.

Mobile applications may be difficult to pass because the amendment to the Constitution only covers the allowance of sports betting in Deadwood. Gamblers would need to be located within the city should they wish to access these applications.

Others will argue they should be eligible for statewide use but that’s not the measure that was voted on, strictly confining the industry to Deadwood for the time being.

With that being said, online sportsbooks may not be something added to the landscape of South Dakota sports betting in 2021 simply because Deadwood is rife with retail locations already, and adding applications that would remain in the area would be superfluous.

Lawmakers could argue that the servers for online sports betting would be located in Deadwood, but the strength of that argument will likely be seen in the 2021 legislative session.

What Happens Now?

The South Dakota Legislature will have their work cut out for them when the session opens in 2021. They will have 40 business days to get the law drawn up to then be enacted.

Casinos in Deadwood can begin their construction for expanding with sportsbooks now as it’s something that will be happening. If they get a jump on their venue space, they could open sports betting as soon as they’re eligible.

After the drawn-up proposal becomes law, retail locations will then need to be approved for the proper licensing and partner with licensed vendors. Residents and tourists can expect to see a launch of legal South Dakota sports betting in 2021, with the Summer of 2021 looking to be the earliest launch date if no delays are seen that could hinder this timeframe.

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