Sports Betting Bill into Law

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine gave gamblers in the Buckeye State an early Christmas present by allowing sports betting.  The Republican signed HB 29 into law last Wednesday, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer. The bill, which passed the state legislature the week before, allows for betting on both professional and collegiate athletic events at physical locations as well as through mobile applications or internet sportsbooks. 

According to previous reports, Ohioans would not be allowed to gamble on sporting events until at least 2023 if the bill is enacted into law, but Sen. Kirk Schurring told the daily newspaper that he believes the market might open sooner. 

As a result of the law, the Ohio Casino Control Commission will be in charge of regulatory tasks, and it will spend the next several months creating regulations for the sports betting industry. It will begin accepting license applications after those are completed, most likely in the summer or fall of 2022. 

Depending on the sort of sportsbook an operator wants to operate, there are three types of licenses available. All 11 racinos in the state, along with eight professional sports teams, four casinos, NASCAR, and the PGA Tour, are likely to apply for licenses. Any pub or eatery with a liquor license is also welcome to apply. 

Only operators that have been granted a Type A license will be able to operate online sportsbooks. Because applying for one costs $2.5 million, casinos, racinos, and sports franchises are likely to be the only bidders for this license category. These licensees can work with up to two suppliers to operate the sportsbook’s day-to-day operations. 

Type B license holders will be able to operate typical retail in-person sportsbooks, while Type C license holders will be able to operate betting kiosks. Type C liquor licenses are only issued to pubs and restaurants that have a liquor license. In comparison to an online or retail sportsbook, the types of bets consumers will be able to place at the kiosk will be limited.  The Ohio Legislative Service Commission forecasts that after the market develops, the Ohio market will be valued at $3.35 billion. 

With a ten percent tax on gross income, the new market is expected to bring in $24 million for the state’s coffers in its first full fiscal year. The government will spend 98 percent of all sports betting tax money on public education, with the remaining 2% going to treatment for problem gamblers.

 

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