The debating continues in statehouses around the country as legal sports betting become a part of American life. Not to mention a potential source for tax revenue. Some states have stayed completely out of the fray citing their state constitutions or religious beliefs while others find themselves knee-deep in the regulatory business.
Week to week there are major changes and advancements, bringing fully legal and fully regulated sports gambling closer to fruition. I’m sure the start of the NCAA and NFL football seasons have nothing to do with it, either… So let’s see what happened this week, state to state.
The state leading the way in the legalization of sports gambling continues to move ahead full tilt. They had their first online sportsbook up and running on August 1st and have recently introduced two more clients this week. playMGM and Sugarhouse are alive in the market just in time for the first weekend of college football. New Jersey continues to impress with many brick and mortar and online sportsbook fully operational.
Legal sports gambling will go live September 1st as the first sportsbook in the state will open its doors. More are on the way though as four of the state’s five casinos have received interim licenses to operate sportsbooks right next to their game room floors.
Sports betting in Pennsylvania is fully legal yet stuck in a holding pattern for the time being as a few squabbles between the many interested parties seem to be mucking up the works. The casinos, the lottery, the lobbyists, and the lawmakers are at odds with each other over about everything. What games can be offered?
Who gets to offer them? And, of course, who gets the moneys? It’s something of a mess really as “virtual” casinos are ruffling the feathers. A deal is said to be reached soon to bring all parties together yet the start of football season (every states’ favorite target date) may have come and gone in that time.
It’s better luck next year for Connecticut sports betting as Gov. Dannel Malloy called off plans to hold a special session and officially shelved the issue. While there is a partial law already in place, tribal complications and lawmakers can’t seem to see eye-to-eye on several key issues most of which are tax related.
Hearings have begun in Illinois concerning a casino bill involving one of the biggest gambling markets there is, Chicago. Not much process is being made apparently though as Chicago vs Springfield politics is again to blame. There is a lot of money at stake here and legal gambling has become a bargaining chip for other considerations. It seems 2018 will have to wait unless there is major rollover in the upcoming midterms.
Several new lobbying groups have begun work in what is one of the world’s largest untapped gambling markets, California. However, much like Illinois, California is still several years away from legal sports gambling and you won’t be able to place a legal wager in the state until well after the 2020 election.
It will take special considerations, ballot bills, and a little luck to see full legalization through. California is a big state and a rich state at that. It’s the fifth largest economy in the world so thinking anything will move quickly through its government is naive. That said, it’s a long game being played and these lobbying firms are just the beginning.
That state with all of this figured out is going the other way. While every other state is attempting to get operations up and running, Nevada is shutting them down. Well, the bad ones at any rate.
The state legislature recently amended harsher penalties for shady operations and their shoddy operators. CG Technologies is the first to be made example of after a recent strings of violations which will result in sizable fines and potentially a license revocation.
Daily Fantasy Sports
The DFS biggest season is within sight and FanDuel and DraftKings are gearing up for what is sure to be another profitable football season.
FanDuel has introduced a series of updates, new game formats, and a new ad campaign, all for the NFL football season. Attracting casual players is the ultimate goal and they’ve invested the time and money. It will be interesting to see how it plays out.
DraftKings announced its intentions to bring college football back from the dead in this upcoming 2018-19 season. The major players stopped offering college football back in 2016 due to considerable political pressure from the NCAA.
This year, DraftKings has decided to buck them completely and reintroduce the college football market. Whether this is because of the recent Supreme Court decision or otherwise, DraftKings is counting on the NCAA not having a leg to stand on.